7 Must-See Stats For Nonprofits About Giving Gains In The USA

By eleventy marketing group

U.S. nonprofit donations totaled $316.23 billion in 2012For nonprofit organizations, momentum and growth are key. You want to constantly be moving forward, expanding your reach and gaining ground. To that end, some new numbers on overall nonprofit donations in the United States deliver some good news.

Cumulative giving has increased for the third consecutive year following the steep 17.6% giving drop that accompanied the economic collapse in 2008. That means, overall, nonprofits are moving in the right direction: steadily climbing upward.

The recent Giving USA: The Annual Report on Philanthropy estimates all giving to charitable organizations across the United States in 2012. Today, we look at some notable numbers from the report that paint a mostly positive picture for nonprofits.

Significant Stats from the 2013 Giving USA Report

Here are seven insightful stats from the Giving USA Report detailing overall giving to nonprofits last year:

U.S. donations totaled $316.23 billion in 2012, a 3.5% increase from the $305.5 billion donated in 2011 (a 1.5% increase when adjusted for inflation)

Giving by individuals was up 3.9% (1.9% inflation-adjusted), to $228.93 billion, outpacing overall growth

Giving by taxpayers who itemize their gifts represented 81% of the total donated by individuals in 2012

Religion and foundations were the only subsectors to see a decrease in contributions in 2012

Here’s the breakdown by nonprofit subsector:

Arts, culture and humanities – +7.8%, $14.44 billion
Education – +7%, $41.33 billion
Environment/animal – +6.8%, $8.3 billion
Public-society benefit – +5.4%, $21.63 billion
Health – +4.9%, $28.12 billion
Human services – +3.8%, $40.4 billion
International affairs – +2.5%, $19.11 billion
Religion – -0.2%, $101.54 billion
Foundations – -4.6%, $30.58 billion

The philanthropic response to Hurricane Sandy drove donations of $223 million to human services organizations and $54 million to public-society benefit organizations

Corporate giving saw the highest jump, up 12.2% (or 9.9% when adjusted for inflation) to $18.15 billion

Corporate giving has grown rapidly, up nearly $5 billion from $13.3 billion in 2008

A Slow Climb Back with a Strong Silver Lining

Patrick Rooney, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Research at the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, which has conducted the research for the Giving USA report since 2000, sees the 2012 stats as a mixed bag. While the growth in giving may have been slow and tempered, it is still a promising trend given the economic environment last year.

“One of the things that’s probably the most notable is that in spite of a stubbornly resistant unemployment rate and slow growth in the economy, giving from individuals, foundations and corporations has grown,” Rooney said.

Rooney notes that if giving continues at the same rate of growth seen in 2012 “it will take another six or seven years to get back to the 2007 peak of $344.48 billion in charitable donations.” While the numbers may be climbing upward slowly, they are still moving in the right direction. At eleventy, we certainly see that as a positive.

About the Giving USA Report
Giving USA is the seminal publication reporting on the sources and uses of charitable giving in the United States. Its research calculates total giving by about 117 million households, approximately 12.4 million corporations that claim charitable deductions, an estimated 99,000 estates, and about 76,000 foundations. Get your copy of the 2013 Giving USA Report.