Italians are 'giving more than ever'

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Italians are devoting more of their time to charity. Photo: HaroldLake/Flickr
13:16 CET+01:00
Over five million Italians, particularly young people, are dedicating their free time to voluntary work, according to the World Giving Index for 2013.

Italians are also donating more to charity, the report found.

“These volunteers represent a cross section of the very best Italians,” Eduardo Patriarca, president of the (Italian Institute for Donations told Italian online newspaper ArticoloTre.

“We need to follow their example to rediscover our country's values, by putting 'giving' at the centre of our actions.”

The World Giving Index collects information about 'giving behaviour' worldwide, including financial donations to charity, volunteering for organisations, and simply helping out strangers.

The biggest number of volunteers in Italy has come from the 15-24 age group, which has now soared into second place after languishing at the bottom in last year's survey.

Milan came top as the country's voluntary capital, with 140,000 of its residents giving their time to charity, an increase of over 200 percent since 2001.

The news comes a survey Eurostat on Thursday revealed that 29.9 per cent of Italians are at risk of poverty, a figure surpassed in the Eurozone only by Greece.

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"Christmas is approaching, and we need to remember to help out Italian charities. In this time of crisis, they need our help more than ever," Patriarca added.

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