Is there such a thing as “too much charity?" To clarify, I am not referring to the "giving" part, I am really talking about the "taking" part.
Last few years I’ve lived in Palm Coast, FL, a small and new city in Northeast Florida, where I’ve witnessed a boom, an inflation of non-profit organizations. Especially recently I am coming across all new one-man, two-women-type non-profit organizations that seem to be really duplicating some other non-profit’s work.
Most these non profits have honorable causes whether it is spaying and neutering pets, or some food-pantry operation, collecting clothing for the homeless, helping domestic abuse victims. It is however questionable why set out to go with a new non-profit organization to accomplish the same goal that’s already being dealt with through multiple organizations, especially in such a small town in terms of population and overall landscape.
I did some research looking for an answer to the question:
How many non profits are there in the US?
I found out that there are now over 1.6 Million registered/active Non-Profits in the United States*. That is 1 Non-Profit per each 140 adult in the United States.
To me, the numbers alone indicate that there is something wrong in the overall non-profit landscape. I am not questioning the cause or the motive of the non-profits (though that may be open to debate based on the numbers alone), but I am questioning the wisdom of duplication, and hence the dilution of efforts through similar charities. Is it really efficient or effective to have this many non-profits?
* According to NCCS (National Center for Charitable Statistics) data, there are over 1.6 Million Non-Profits in the US as of 2010.