St. Andrew’s Society is founded in Charleston, SC, "to assist all people in distress, or whatsoever Nation or Profession.
Jean Louis makes gift for founding Charity Hospital, New Orleans.
Philadelphia Bettering House, sometimes called "Pauper Palace," opened.
St. George Society was created as a charity to help impoverished colonists in New York City, who had need of sustenance and perhaps the cost of a fare for a passage home. It was quickly followed in 1772 by a branch in Philadelphia and another in Charleston in 1773. Other branches followed in other American states and in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and elsewhere. The society exists today as the St. George’s Society of New York and is considered the oldest charity in the United States.
Parliamentary Act, which ran until 1775, closes Boston Port, creating the greatest relief problem in colonial period. Other towns and colonies send money, grain and livestock to aid Boston residents and businesses.
This is just a small sampling from a book written about private charities in the United States.
Here's the statistics from the National Poverty Center.
In the late 1950s, the poverty rate for all Americans was 22.4 percent, or 39.5 million individuals. These numbers declined steadily throughout the 1960s, reaching a low of 11.1 percent, or 22.9 million individuals, in 1973. Over the next decade, the poverty rate fluctuated between 11.1 and 12.6 percent, but it began to rise steadily again in 1980. By 1983, the number of poor individuals had risen to 35.3 million individuals, or 15.2 percent.