A Return to Growth
After a decidedly mixed year for philanthropy in 2018, last year saw the return of strong growth. Overall, charitable contributions increased to $449.64 billion and all 10 key giving sectors– Religion, Education, Human Services, Foundations, Health, Public-Society Benefit, Arts and Culture, International Affairs, Environment/Animals, and Individuals– saw increases in giving.
This strong bounce-back was driven by a strong stock-market; increased consumer confidence; "acceptance” of the financial, political, and social environment; and the lack of major additional changes to tax laws.
However, optimism should be tempered until the full impact of 2020 is known. The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the resulting global recession, and social justice movement on philanthropy will be difficult to predict.