Brooklyn residents are the most generous in the city, contributing a greater proportion of their income to charity than any other borough, according to a civic engagement report by Brooklyn Community Foundation.
The report – released late October – is the first of nine reports contained within “Brooklyn Trends,” a comprehensive analysis of the civic health of Brooklyn’s 2.5 million residents across 71 neighborhoods, revealing emerging trends and disparities among communities.
Brooklyn Community Foundation President Marilyn Gelber said the information in Brooklyn Trends elevates the borough beyond the sentimental reflections of old Brooklyn and the hipster branding of new Brooklyn to present real information about real people.
“It’s a focused picture of our successes and challenges and provides information that can be channeled into immediate action,” said Gelber.
Although some of the findings might reaffirm what many Brooklynites know already about themselves, their neighborhood and their neighbors, the information is fresh, relevant, surprising, empowering for residents and useful across a variety of other audiences.
The reports are intended to enhance policy, programmatic and funding decisions for Brooklyn-based community groups, government, businesses, while also support the work of researchers and media.
For example, aside from being the most generous in the city, Brooklynites who are less financially well-off, on average, give a greater proportion of their incomes to charity.
- Borough Park and Flatbush/Midwood residents gave the highest contributions as a percentage of their income to charity (Greenpoint and Sunset Park ranked lowest)
- One in five adults Brooklyn residents is not eligible to vote due to non-citizen status
- One in five employed Brooklynites work in either the non-profit or public sectors
- 25.9 percent of the Brooklyn workforce is unionized
- According to CouncilStat and 311 calls, the issues Brooklyn residents care about most are housing, transportation and noise levels
The full Brooklyn Trends series assesses the quality of life indicators across the borough in arts & culture, civic engagement, demographics, economy, environment, health, housing public safety and youth & education.
“As a lifelong Brooklynite, I’ve witnessed a lot of changes firsthand, but we need the facts to back up our decisions, facts which also give us insight into what’s to come,” said Alan Fishman, chairman of the Brooklyn Community Foundation.
“For me, that’s a huge part of the Foundation’s value—to be a source of knowledge about our borough and to guide donors to areas of need so that our collective philanthropic resources can have the greatest positive impact in our communities.
Download the full report on civic engagement here. The remaining eight reports will be released over the next six months.