4: CWUCOM312 – Historical Perspective of non-profits in the US

Read… Based on what you read, write a paragraph describing what historical time period effected non-profits the most… in your opinion… :). What else did you take out of this reading?

Historical perspective of nonprofits


One thought on “4: CWUCOM312 – Historical Perspective of non-profits in the US

  1. While there are many different aspects throughout history that have greatly impacted the formation of what nonprofit organizations are today, I believe the most influential events occurred between 1860-1920. The Civil War inspired many philanthropic efforts and ignited large scale fund raising efforts by organizations such as the United States Christian Commission to meet the needs of injured soldiers and other war efforts. The need of support from nonprofit organizations also became immensely important post war in rebuilding and rejuvenating the country from the devastating effects of war. In addition to this time period highlighting the important role nonprofits play to society, the flourishing economy of the time and the inclusion of businessmen popularly serving on boards, allowed nonprofits to expand into areas beyond addressing basic human needs to include resources for higher education, museums, fine arts and science. Andrew Carnegie, one of America’s most successful businessmen of this time period, had a major influence in redirecting nonprofit efforts encouraging organizations to focus on providing solutions for the causes of societal problems instead of simply addressing issues after they become visible. I believe Carnegie’s philosophy of focusing on addressing the sources of societal problems to create sustainable solutions has been the inspiration for creating vision and mission statements that nonprofits rely on for guidance today. I found the article to be very interesting and realized just how much the role of the government has played in shaping the way nonprofits evolved over the years. It’s interesting to think about how nonprofits would operate today had there not been the failure or success of government policies such as Roosevelt’s tax reforms which lead to trend of wealthy American’s avoiding taxation through charitable donations.

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