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Small Businesses Giving Back Makes a Big Impact on Local Communities
by Bridget Weston
March 5, 2024
Staff Serving Food In Homeless Shelter Kitchen

Martin Luther King Jr. Day, also known as the MLK Day of Service, is on January 21, 2019, and in honor of the holiday, SCORE researched how small businesses give back to their communities.

SCORE’s recent infographic, “Small Business Charitable Giving: Big Impact on Local Communities,” delves into how charitable donations from small businesses improve local communities and why more businesses should focus on giving back.

According to one survey, small businesses donate 250% more than larger businesses to local non-profits and community causes, and a staggering 75% of small business owners donate an average of 6% of their profits to charitable organizations annually. As of 2019, 81% of small businesses plan on giving back to their community 2019.

How Do Small Businesses Support Their Communities?

While each small business typically has a list of different organizations and causes it donates to, many businesses tend to support similar areas in their communities. Among the businesses surveyed:

  • 66% percent give to local charities
  • 48% support local youth organizations
  • 42% donate to local first responders
  • 39% support local religious organizations
  • 37% aid local services groups such as the Rotary club and Scouts
  • 32% donate food or volunteer in local soup kitchens.

While these are some of the top recipients of donations, a wide variety of community-based programs and organizations across the country are benefiting from the generosity of small businesses.

Doing Good Is Good for Business

For businesses, the improvement of the local community isn’t the only benefit they see from charitable giving. Eighty-five percent of consumers have a more positive image of a company that gives to charity, and 90% of consumers want to know how companies are supporting charitable causes.

Businesses that give back have a huge selling point to offer customers. More than ever, people are looking to support local small businesses that share their values, so they know their money is benefiting their community.

Charitable Giving Engages Employees

Aside from a better community and happy customers, giving back also has a positive ripple effect on the company’s employees. 93% of employees who volunteer with their company said they are happy with their employer.

Company-sponsored volunteering is shown to:

  • Improve employee leadership and broaden professional skill sets (92%)
  • Help employee well-being (77%)
  • Boost morale (70%)
  • Strengthen camaraderie with work colleagues (64%)

The benefits of small businesses donating their time or money to local organizations are endless, and when businesses take the time to help their community, it improves the entire local ecosystem.

Are you looking for a way to give back? Volunteer with SCORE! Join our team of more than 10,000 volunteers in 300 chapters nationwide. Become a SCORE volunteer.

About the author
Bridget Weston
Bridget Weston
Bridget Weston is the CEO of the SCORE Association, where she provides executive leadership and works directly and collaboratively with the Board of Directors to establish the vision and direction of SCORE.
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Funded, in part, through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA.

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