Donors recommend 9% more in grant funding, providing a “ready reserve” for charities amid a 19% slide in the S&P 500
BOSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Fidelity Charitable®—an independent public charity and the nation’s largest grantmaker—distributed $11.2 billion in donor-recommended grants in 2022, nearly $1 billion more than in the previous year, according to its 2023 Giving Report.
This giving level represents a 9% increase over 2021 and a surge of philanthropic support during a 12-month period when the S&P 500 experienced a 19% decline. In total, donors recommended an unprecedented 2.2 million individual grants to 189,000 charities that operate at local, national, and international levels.
Donors gave actively despite signs of uncertainty in the U.S. economy—inflation spikes, rising interest rates, market swings, and layoffs across multiple sectors—recommending an average of 11.8 grants per account. The average grant grew slightly to $4,798, an increase of about $391 per grant compared to 2021.
“Despite volatile market conditions and economic unknowns, Fidelity Charitable donors stepped forward to bolster the critical work of nonprofits in our communities, recommending almost $1 billion more to charities than in the prior year,” said Fidelity Charitable President Jacob Pruitt. “The upward trend demonstrates how donor-advised funds make it possible for donors to maintain giving over time—even in moments of crisis or during market downturns when nonprofits are particularly vulnerable and need steady streams of revenue that they can count on.”
A “ready reserve” to sustain giving, respond to crises
In 2022, 63% of donor grant recommendations were designated “where needed most.” This designation means that nonprofits have the flexibility to apply funds to their most mission-critical priorities, particularly valuable in a time when nonprofits might need to shift resources based on rising costs.
“We heard from our donors through the year that they were concerned about the impact of inflation and the economy,” said Pruitt. “What we saw through their record granting activity and support for 189,000 nonprofits in communities across the nation is that they were able to put that concern into action, not only sustaining their giving but increasing it.”
Donors also used their Fidelity Charitable donor-advised funds to practice responsive philanthropy, supporting charities focused on emerging situations in the United States and abroad. For example, Fidelity Charitable donors responded to the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine by recommending hundreds of millions in grant dollars to provide aid, moving several charities into the top 20 most popular for 2022. These include the United States Fund for UNICEF, International Rescue Committee, and Save the Children Federation, the latter of which rose to appear in the ranking for the first time. Disasters closer to home—including flooding in Kentucky and Hurricane Ian in Florida—also contributed to a surge in support and top-20 rankings for disaster relief organizations like World Central Kitchen and Samaritan’s Purse that simultaneously responded to crises in the U.S. and Ukraine.
Highlights from the 2023 Giving Report include:
- Donor generosity fueled record granting results in 2022—2.2 million grants totaling $11.2 billion that went to 189,000 charitable organizations.
- Fidelity Charitable distributed nearly $1 billion more in donor-recommended grants to charities in 2022 than in the previous year.
- Donors recommended an average of 11.8 grants per account, and the average grant size was $4,798.
- Grant dollars distributed by Fidelity Charitable to nonprofits have grown more than fivefold over the last 10 years.
- Demonstrating donors’ commitment to providing a reliable, consistent stream of revenue to their favorite charities, 77% of grants in 2022 went to nonprofits previously supported.
- While most charitable contributions in the United States are made in cash, checks, or credit cards, 57% of Fidelity Charitable contributions in 2022 were made in the form of more strategic non-cash assets, enabling donors to give more.
- In 2022, donors contributed $1.4 billion in non-publicly traded assets, such as restricted stock, private equity, and limited partnership interests. Fidelity Charitable experts help donors identify the smartest assets to contribute and quickly convert these difficult-to-donate assets into cash available for granting.
- Three-quarters of donors’ contribution dollars are granted within five years of receipt.
For more information, view the full report here.
About Fidelity Charitable
Fidelity Charitable is an independent public charity that has helped donors support more than 382,000 nonprofit organizations with nearly $73 billion in grants. Established in 1991, Fidelity Charitable is rooted in innovation, from its launch of the first national donor-advised fund program to its facilitation of difficult-to-donate assets to its tech-forward giving platform. The mission of the organization is to grow the American tradition of philanthropy by providing programs that make charitable giving accessible, simple, and effective. For more information about Fidelity Charitable, visit https://www.fidelitycharitable.org.
Fidelity Charitable is the brand name for the Fidelity Investments® Charitable Gift Fund, an independent public charity with a donor-advised fund program. Various Fidelity companies provide services to Fidelity Charitable. The Fidelity Charitable name and logo and Fidelity are registered service marks of FMR LLC, used by Fidelity Charitable under license. 1073360.1.0
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