Singapore behind Malaysia, Thailand, while Myanmar tops World Giving Index

Countries rank on the World Giving Index 2016.

Singapore may be on top of many indexes, but when it comes to charity and giving, we don't fare so well.

Singapore ranks at number 34 out of 145 on the World Giving Index this year, behind neighbouring countries like Malaysia, at 10th spot, and Thailand, at number 19.

Myanmar, one of the least developed countries in Asean, is number one in the The Charities Aid Foundation's (CAF) sixth World Giving Index, holding the position for the second year running.

According to the report, the generosity of Myanmarese people could be attributed to Theravada Buddhism, as charitable giving is integral to the religious observance.

The index measures three kinds of generosity, namely the giving of money, time, and helping a stranger.

On the ‘helping a stranger’ table, which asks if a person has helped a stranger in the last month, Singapore is at number 89.

However, Singapore ranks much higher up on the ‘donating money’ table at number 18, just below Malaysia at number 17.

On the ‘volunteering time’ table, Singapore stands at number 42.

To summarise the index findings, CAF chief executive John Low said, “It is heartening to see that even during these times of economic uncertainty across the word, people are increasingly likely to donate money to causes that help others.”

He added that it was humbling to see countries which have suffered adversity continue to score highly on the index.

Singapore Red Cross secretary general and chief executive officer Benjamin William told Yahoo Singapore there has actually been an increasing trend of people volunteering in Singapore.

“Many individuals and families are struggling to make ends meet, as well as coping with social and physical challenges such as chronic illnesses, disabilities, or family tragedies… we hope that Singaporeans will not forget these vulnerable people amongst us, and also channel their generosity and compassion to support the humanitarian services aimed at helping this group,” he said.

William said Singapore continues to be generous and forthcoming in responding to good causes, such as helping communities affected by natural disasters.

“Generally, donors are very supportive of organisations when they can identify with and relate to the cause,” he added.

The World Giving Index was conducted on the Gallup methodology, where 1,000 questionnaires were completed by a representative sample of individuals living across a country.

In larger countries, samples of at least 2,000 are collected.