WASHINGTON, D.C.— On Tuesday, June 21, Giving USA released their annual report chronicling charitable giving in 2021. Although the report shows total giving reached $484.85 billion, up 4 percent compared to 2020, giving did not keep pace with inflation. When adjusted for last year’s inflation rate, total giving decreased by 0.7 percent
The 4-percent growth in charitable giving in 2021 appears to be good news, especially following historic giving levels to some charitable sectors in response to COVID in 2020. But giving trends continue to raise alarm bells in the charitable sector. Not only has the percentage of donors continued to decline, but in view of continued high inflation, the Charitable Giving Coalition anticipates a further decline in 2022.
“We’re glad to see an unadjusted increase in giving in 2021, especially in a time of historic need, but there is still room to grow.” said Brian Flahaven, chair of the Charitable Giving Coalition. “When adjusted for inflation, the 2021 numbers for individuals are just now approaching the pre-tax reform level of giving in 2017. Coupled with the steady decline in the percentage of Americans giving to charity over the past two decades, sound public policy encouraging charitable giving is now more important than ever.”
The Charitable Giving Coalition is working with lawmakers to renew and expand the universal charitable deduction that expired at the end of last year. Doing so would help reverse the declining share of Americans who give to charity and increase giving even more.
“Charitable organizations across the country continue to encounter mounting needs for their services,” said Flahaven. “As we continue to face high levels of inflation in 2022, growing the number of givers and amount given is critical to enable the charitable sector to meet those vital needs. The Charitable Giving Coalition looks forward to working with Senate and House champions in Congress over the next several months and during our fall advocacy day to advance a renewal of the universal charitable deduction for non-itemizers before year-end.
The Charitable Giving Coalition
Representing private and community foundations, their grantees and independent charities, the Charitable Giving Coalition’s members include United Way Worldwide, the Salvation Army, Catholic Charities USA, the American Council on Education, Jewish Federations of North America, the American Institute for Cancer Research, the Association of Fundraising Professionals, Independent Sector, the Council on Foundations, and United Philanthropy Forum, among others. Formed in 2009, the coalition is dedicated to preserving the charitable giving incentive that ensures that our nation’s charities receive the funds necessary to fulfill their essential philanthropic missions. The coalition provides a unique and unified voice on Capitol Hill on issues affecting the charitable deduction, a voice composed of both direct lobbying and robust grassroots advocacy. www.charitablegivingcoalition.org, @CGC_DC