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Global CompassionPrivate Voluntary Organizations and U.S. Foreign Policy Since 1939$
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Rachel M. McCleary

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195371178

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195371178.001.1

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Dispelling Common Perceptions

Dispelling Common Perceptions

(p.3) 1 Dispelling Common Perceptions
Global Compassion

Rachel M. McCleary (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

An overview of the book’s main issues is presented: food aid, the role of the military in humanitarian aid, funding priorities, and the future of foreign aid. PVO financial independence is interrelated with types of federal funding mechanisms. To find out how much federal assistance PVOs received over time, a large data set on revenue and expenditures was constructed from 1939 to 2005 for all U.S.-based PVOs engaged in foreign assistance and registered with the federal government. The data set is new and the most comprehensive on U.S.-based PVOs. This introduction describes the data and characterizes the main trends among religious and secular PVOs since 1939. Analysis of the data produces findings that are contrary to widely held perceptions about PVOs and their relationship with the federal government. Two predominant myths are dispelled. Religious agencies have been integral to international humanitarian and development efforts since the formalization of the field in 1939. PVOs over the decades have increasingly sought federal funding and once recipients of federal dollars, they become an interest group.

Keywords:   private voluntary organization, federal revenue, private revenue, religious, secular, food aid, foreign assistance

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