UK falls two places in table of most generous countries

The Charities Aid Foundation's World Giving Index shows the UK has fallen to eighth over the past year; Myanmar remains number one

The UK has fallen two places to eighth in an annual list of the most generous countries in the world, although it remains the highest ranked in Europe. 

The Charities Aid Foundation’s World Giving Index is based on data from the polling firm Gallup, which surveyed people in more than 140 countries, and measures the percentage of each country’s population that gave money, helped a stranger or volunteered over the past month.

It found that 69 per cent of people in the UK gave money to charity – a six percentage point fall from last year’s index.

The index also found that the percentage of people helping a stranger fell from 63 per cent last year to 61 per cent this year.

But the index shows that a third of people in the UK volunteered in the previous month, up from 26 per cent the previous year.

Myanmar was the most generous country for the third year in a row, according to the index, with the US, Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Canada and Indonesia all coming ahead of the UK.

The Republic of Ireland and the United Arab Emirates rounded off the top 10.

The index found that Iraq and Libya ranked first and second for people helping a stranger, and Turkmenistan was the top-ranked country for percentage of people volunteering.

Only five of the G20, representing 20 of the world’s major economies, appeared in the top 20 of the World Giving Index.

John Low, chief executive of CAF, said: "In every country, people have this in-built desire to give and help others. Governments should encourage that spirit of generosity and create the environment in which a strong civil society can flourish allowing people to reach out to those less fortunate than themselves."

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