Private Giving for the Public Good

25 April 2008

Cultural Leaders Call For Increase In Private Giving For The Public Good

Leaders of Britain's major cultural institutions have come together to launch a new manifesto, Private Giving for the Public Good, opening a nationwide campaign to encourage a culture of giving to the arts and heritage.

The campaign calls for greater support to encourage a culture of giving and wider recognition of the contribution made by cultural philanthropists. Many UK cultural institutions were founded through the contributions of private benefactors who wished to give something back to their communities. The aim is to encourage the philanthropists of the future.

The campaign is being led by the National Museum Directors' Conference, the Museums, Libraries and Archive Council and Arts Council England with the support of Arts & Business, The Art Fund, The Association of Independent Museums, The Beacon Fellowship, English Heritage, The Group of Large Local Authority Museums, The Museums Association, Museums Galleries Scotland, The National Campaign for the Arts, The National Trust, Northern Ireland Museums Council, Philanthropy UK and The University Museums Group, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Scottish Arts Council and Arts Council of Wales.

The aims of the campaign are:

  • To provide greater incentives for living donors to make gifts of objects to the cultural sector
  • To give greater recognition to people who give to the cultural sector
  • To ensure that all parts of the country benefit from cultural philanthropy
  • To share knowledge and expertise in this field across the whole arts and heritage sector

To download the document, Private Giving for the Public Good, click here.

Mark Jones, Chair, National Museum Directors Conference and Director, V&A, said: "We want to encourage more people to give to culture. People who start by giving to cultural organisations tend to give to other things as well. We want the whole of society to benefit from this campaign."

People who start by giving to cultural organisations tend to give to other things as well.

Roy Clare, Chief Executive, Museums, Libraries and Archives Council, said: "Collections enable people to understand the significance of their cultural inheritance. Investing in these rich resources is a privilege open to everyone; a gift to culture is a gift that spans generations, with legacies for learning, creativity and pleasure. Private giving for the public good should be an instinct at the very heart of our nation."

Alan Davey, Chief Executive, Arts Council England, said: "One of the great strengths of arts and culture in England is the diversity of its funding. Together, public and private funders create a unique context in which great art can flourish - art which enriches people's lives and helps us understand the world around us - exposure to art is a gift for life."

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