A new Smithsonian exhibit on philanthropy focuses on the intersection of giving and health around the globe

T​he Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History’s refreshed "Giving in America" exhibit reopens this week.

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History’s revamped Giving in America exhibit reopens this week.

This year, the theme focuses on the intersections between philanthropy, health, and medicine on a global scale.

Giving has taken many forms throughout American history and has become firmly woven into the American experience. Every year millions of Americans contribute money, time, talent, and resources to causes across the country and throughout the world. Philanthropy is not unique to the United States, but Americans’ ideals of participation, equality, resourcefulness, and shared responsibility have shaped a distinctive form of giving in America. - from the "Giving in America" exhibit

Giving in America is a permanent exhibit that looks at the historical role of philanthropy and how it shaped the United States. Four major themes of American philanthropy are showcased, focusing on the questions of “Who Gives?” “Why Do We Give?” “What Do We Give?” and “How Do We Give?”

slideshow of people giving in america Giving has taken many forms throughout American history and has become firmly woven into the American experience. (Photos: Smithsonian)

The exhibit also features a section devoted to an annual topic and currently looks at "Giving and the Arts."

Items in the collection range from the original ice bucket used in the Ice Bucket Challenge that went wildly viral in 2014 to a collection box used for charitable donations from the early 19th century.

Learn more about the exhibit here.