The stereotype of New Englanders as provincial and tight-fisted may not be far from the truth. Statistics compiled by the Internal Revenue Service find that in the area of the country with the most money, New Englanders donate the least to charity.
With that in mind, a group of philanthrophic organizations led by the Ellis L. Phillips Foundation in Boston began The Catalogue Project. The result was an 80-page black-and-white catalog that profiles 100 charitable groups in the Bay State as well as tips on various methods of giving.
"The premise was simple. If people are properly asked, then they're likely to give," said George McCully, a foundation trustee who spearheaded the project. As noted in a letter to readers, the catalog was "an experiment" in philanthropic marketing.
Rhode Island-based designer Malcolm Grear oversaw the look of the catalog, timed for delivery to select households right before the holidays. The result so far has been "more than token giving," McCully reported. --Judy Warner