It's been proven time and time again. Americans are the most charitable citizens in the world.  Even foreigners think so. The Christian Science Monitor last year ran the results of a study conducted by interviewing people from 152 other countries across the globe and the U.S. came in first -- again. The New York Times says, depending on the year, Americans donate anywhere from $229 to $295 billion to charitable causes of all types.

But when does "giving fatigue" set in? Do Americans begin to feel as though they are expected to give?

Many major companies are faced with the same dilemma. As reported by the New York Times, if they give too little they're perceived as greedy. Give too much, and it can even affect your bottom line and financial health.

Although the article was written in 2009, many of the social and economic factors are still the same. The Christian Science Monitor asked "Are There Too Many Charities in America?" You might be surprised to learn there are over (as of 2009) 1.4 million charitable organizations in the U.S. -- or about one for every 300 people.

The Monitor suggests one of the ways to avoid such fatigue and make the money work harder is to make charities more efficient.

Another idea would be to allow more local focus, where local citizens who wish to donate to a major charity can see their money being used in their community. Often, people become frustrated when they donate because they don't always see their efforts making a difference in their own community.

And finally, rather than not donate, citizens are urged to seek out groups in their own city.