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Americans give less overseas than domestically to support the poor.

By November 23, 2004

USA (MNN)–Compassion International has released the details of a study conducted by the Barna Research showing that Americans support domestic poverty relief over international relief by an eight-to-one margin.

This giving gap increased from last year, when 15 percent said they would prefer to give money overseas. In 2003, Americans supported domestic poverty relief over international relief by a 5-to-1 margin.

Compassion President, Wes Stafford says Americans believe the governments in Third World countries should step in. Stafford says there’s more to it. “I still think Americans don’t fully ‘get it’. They don’t fully understand the scope of the problems that these developing nations are facing. People in poverty are lacking resources, basic resources that we take for granted that we’re so blessed with.”

Under their mission, action is a Godly response. Stafford explains that they’re fighting against the loss of nearly 30-thousand children every day due to malnutrition.

The survey also indicated that 65-percent of Americans believe parents of the poor bear most of the responsibility for helping impoverished children while a slightly larger group (68 percent) said governments should be taking care of those in need in foreign countries.

Stafford says the results of the study show they need to educate Americans more about the conditions elsewhere, adding, “Whenever anything goes wrong in a developing nation, it goes really wrong. There’s no ‘safety net’, nothing from the government that can step in and help people out in very difficult times.”

The Barna OmniPoll included 1,011 telephone interviews conducted among a representative sample of adults over the age of 18 within the 48 continental states from September 16 through September 22. The survey has a sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points.

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