Giving USA 2018: The Annual Report on Philanthropy©, is the longest running, most comprehensive report on philanthropy in America. Offering a visual perspective, the infographic of this report showcases a stellar year for philanthropy. Giving continues to rise for the eighth consecutive year, reaching its highest levels ever at $410.02 billion in 2017 contributions. This is a 5.2% increase over last year.
Our sixth annual BeneGraphic portrays this growth utilizing a space theme for an additional perspective on the data. Various key points include:
- GDPs Gravitational Pull. Giving continues to be 2.1% of the gross domestic product continuing to be a predictive force for yet another year.
- Studied Acceleration. Some donors rushed to make charitable contributions prior to the adoption tax reform, resulting in a spike in year-end giving. But a study by Indiana University found that the longer-term impact could reduce charitable giving by as much as $13 billion in future years.
- Booster Fuel. For the first time since the Great Recession, the percent of households making new gifts to charities increased. First-time gifts declined by 16.1% from 2010 through 2016, then rose 10% in 2017. Gains were fueled largely by natural disasters and/or civic involvement.
- A Vanishing Trend. “Rage donations” emerged from the hyper-partisan 2016 elections. They’ve been described as a “middle-class citizen’s form of protest—that actually works.” In 2017, this phenomenon resulted in an unknown number of new or increased gifts. When the anger fades, will these gifts vanish?
- Disaster Giving. American donors responded with generosity to an unusual number disasters that affected North America including hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria; the earthquake in Mexico; and the most destructive wildfire season on record.
- Still Growing. Donor Advised Funds continue to grow at three times the rate of philanthropy overall. Gifts from DAFs go disproportionately to education, Public-Society Benefit, and Arts, Culture & Humanities.
The infographic provides insights for your organization — and just a bit of entertainment — to serve the common good.