Charitable giving is up at North Carolina-based charities. North Carolina Secretary of State Elaine Marshall shared the good news at Tuesday’s Council of State meeting.

The state’s most recent Charitable Solicitation Report, a resource that shows how much of the money people give to covered charities actually goes to the mission versus how much goes to the fundraisers or administrative costs, shows that this year, overall giving increased by 40%. The effectiveness of the charities reached an all-time high, just slightly under 82%. Those figures also equate to more than $47.5 million from North Carolinians going to charities, a $13.3 million increase over the prior year.

“I think that’s really good news for North Carolina charities,” Marshall said. “Now, the point to make about this is it doesn’t cover all charities, and the fact that we had such a good report this year does not mean that there aren’t needs out there in the communities that are unmet. We did our rollout at the Green Chair Project on Capital Boulevard, and a lot of folks didn’t know it existed. They’re very pleased to know what kind of resources are there.”

She said as a reminder, they encourage the public to give but give wisely. (Editor’s note – Websites like or are good resources to check out charities before giving.)

Marshall also said that the state is progressing in closing the divide between urban and rural businesses.

She said they began to focus on how to help rural business owners and initially sent out a resource bulletin to seven counties. They are currently up to twenty-four and intend to reach all seventy-eight rural counties.

“We surveyed new entrepreneurs on their one-year anniversary and found that they don’t know where to go for help,” Marshall said. “We surveyed them and asked what were their obstacles, and what would they like to have known. We are now sending with each new (business) creation, a bulletin to these new creators with an information list that is customized to their county, and we are providing them with local connections.”

Marshall said resource providers already exist that can give free or low-cost services to these businesses, and they don’t know about it. 

“My advice to somebody who’s interested whose county is not on the list is just go to a neighboring county because we’ve got those all over the state,” she said. “A lot of these providers are regional providers, so they would apply to that particular county.” The Department of State has set up a website,, for more information.