Kenya is the most generous country in Africa, a new report shows. It is also the second most improved country globally and the 11th overall, with 47 per cent.
According to the World Giving Index (10th edition) released on Tuesday by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), more than half of Kenyans donate money to charity.
The study looked at how people in 125 countries give their time and money to causes that they care about over the last decade.
CAF chief executive officer John Low said the survey, conducted by Gallup and involving views of more than 1.3 million people in more than 125 countries, took place between 2009 and 2018.
The study focused on the agility to help strangers who are in need, donating money to charity and volunteering one's time to an organisation.
Kenya came second after Indonesia as the most improved countries overall, having increased their index score by an average of 19 points each. Singapore came a distant third.
"In Kenya, more than half of people donated money to charity, while Indonesia now has more people helping a stranger than at any time in the last 10 years," states the world's largest survey of charitable endeavours.
Kenya topped in Africa as the most improved country and in terms of the 10-year aggregate scores where it compares favourably with rich Western and Eastern countries.
In the 10-year aggregate, the United States of America (USA) is the world's most generous country with 58 per cent, followed closely by New Zealand (57 per cent), Ireland (56 per cent), United Kingdom (54 per cent) and Sri Lanka (51 per cent).
On the flip side, China has the lowest index score at 16 per cent and is the only country that appears in the bottom 10 for all three parameters measured (helping a stranger, donating money and volunteering time). Other lowest scoring countries include Greece (16 per cent), Yemen (17 per cent), Bulgaria, State of Palestine, Serbia and Lithuania, all at 19 per cent.
SOUTH AFRICA SIXTH
Kenya is the only African country in the top 20 generous nations, with Nigeria ranked number 22 and Zambia 32.
South Africa came sixth among the most improved, with Rwanda settling for eighth.
In the helping strangers category, Kenya scored fourth -- with 68 per cent -- out of 10 countries, six of which were African.
In donating money, Kenya ranked position 34 with 38 per cent while in volunteering time, it was 13th with 37 per cent.
According to the report, men are generally more likely to help the destitute than women.
"In the past decade, men are more likely than women to help a stranger (49 per cent of men versus 46 per cent of women) but they are equally likely to have donated money (29 per cent of men and women).
Men are also slightly more likely than women to have volunteered their time (22 per cent of men versus 19 per cent of women on average)," it states.
The report further reveals that older people are least likely to help a stranger, particularly in the developed world. However, the tendency to donate money generally increases with age. It adds:
"Those aged over 50 are the most likely to have given money to charity over the 10 years. While 25 per cent of those aged 15-29 had donated money, this rises to 32 per cent among those aged 50 and above. The biggest jump, however, is from those aged 15-29 to 30-49 where there is a six percentage point difference in the number of people donating money."
Among the countries that improved most, half are from Asia, three from Africa and one each from Europe and North America. This illustrates that the culture of giving is not limited to a particular culture or religion.
Much as African countries did not top the generosity report, none of them features in the least generous nations either.