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Czechs More Philanthropic Than Citizens of Other Visegrad Countries, Says Survey

People in the Czech Republic are more engaged in philanthropic activities than citizens of Hungary, Poland or Slovakia, according to a survey in these countries of the Visegrad Group (V4) on motivation to volunteer and help with crisis management.

In the Czech Republic, the survey was carried out by experts from the Institute of Economy and Management at the Prague University of Chemistry and Technology (VSCHT). The survey had 2,034 respondents altogether, including 580 in the Czech Republic. The authors of the survey acknowledge that the findings are not representative, but maintain they are statistically significant.

The researchers investigated whether people had volunteered for an philanthropic association or institution in their lifetime or in the last two years, either for free or for a small remuneration. They also focused on unpaid help to neighbours, friends or in the community, and on so-called informal volunteering. They also asked whether and for what people donated money. The questions were based on similar monitoring of volunteering activities in Switzerland.

57% of adults in the Czech Republic have volunteered, helped out or given money at some point. One third of Czech respondents were engaged in all three areas: they volunteered, helped and financially contributed. In the other V4 countries, one out of five respondents were engaged in all three areas.

12% of Czechs have never engaged in philanthropic activities, compared to around 20% in Hungary, 25% in Slovakia, and 30% in Poland. People in the Czech Republic were also more likely to say they have been active in the last two years.

In all Visegrad countries, the main motivation for volunteering is the opportunity to help others, mentioned by three-fifths of people. Czechs, however, were much more likely to see free work for associations or institutions as fun, an opportunity to meet other people and develop themselves, and also to change things.

The survey also examined how V4 citizens contributed in the last two years to emergencies such as the wars in Ukraine and elsewhere, the floods in Pakistan, and the earthquake in Turkey. In the Czech part of the survey, the tornado in South Moravia, the huge wildfire in the České Švýcarsko National Park, and the coronavirus epidemic were added. Local natural disasters and other emergencies were added in the three other countries.

Donations were made by 58% of Czechs, 40% of Poles, 36% of Slovaks, and just under 30% of Hungarians. On average, people in the Czech Republic also donated more money to Ukraine than those in other V4 countries.

In the Czech Republic, men donate more during political and war events, while women contribute more to humanitarian aid. People over 65 give the most to military causes, the survey showed.

The largest survey of volunteering in the Czech Republic to date was conducted last autumn by the Czech Statistical Office. Government representatives and statisticians are expected to present the results at a press conference on 25 June. The plan is to map the situation every four years.

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