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Giving USA Report Reinforces Importance of Individual Donors

By June 25, 2014October 2nd, 2014Reports

Just last week the annual Giving USA report was released with data on philanthropic giving stats for 2013 in the U.S.

The single largest source of charitable contributions continues to be individual donors:  Here’s the overview: 


The exciting and interesting news: four areas where giving significantly increased over the past year:

  • 8.9% to education causes
  • 7% to public-society benefit causes
  • 6.3% to arts and culture causes
  • 6% to animals and environmental causes

If you are not focusing a large percentage of your fundraising effort on individual donors you can’t ignore this large source of funding for your organization any longer. Focusing on individual donors is key to growing your annual fundraising, this year and ANY year. 

It is true: Individual donor fundraising takes focus and at least one staff person designated to building relationships with people, real people who are making the giving decisions. Giving USA has compiled a short three-page Free Report Highlights (download it here). Take the time to read and discuss the findings with your fund development team, other key staff & your board leadership.


I have collected a few posts that do a great job of recapping the numbers and providing context for fundraisers.

  • “The single largest contributor to the increase in total charitable giving in 2013, over 2012, was an increase of $9.69 billion in giving by individuals (in current dollars),” from Forbes.
  • “Giving by individuals rose to $228.93 billion in 2012, an estimated 3.9 percent increase (1.9 percent adjusted for inflation),” from Michael Rosen Says.
  • “This also means, with the economy brightening and donors more comfortable giving again, there is tremendous opportunities for fundraisers to connect and engage with individual donors, foundations and corporations alike,” from Fundraising Success


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