COVID-19 impact on financial support for nonprofits

COVID-19 and Philanthropy, Fidelity Charitable

Our client Fidelity Charitable recently published results from a survey of philanthropic individuals to see how they’re thinking about philanthropy in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and how the situation could affect their giving and volunteering behaviors.

Key takeaways include the following:

  • Most donors plan to maintain—or even increase—the amount they donate to charity this year. Younger generations plan to step up their donations in greater numbers; 46 percent of Millennials say they will give more in response to the pandemic, compared to 14 percent of Baby Boomers and 25 percent of Gen X.
  • Volunteer activity is likely to dramatically decrease due to the pandemic. Nearly half (47 percent) of recent volunteers believe the amount of time they volunteer will decrease or stop entirely because of the pandemic. Top concerns cited by this group include that the organization may not be open for a time due to COVID-19 (66%), I don’t want to be close to other people/ don’t feel it’s safe (42%) and I’m in a higher risk group due to age or underlying health conditions (33%).
  • Donors are most concerned about the way that COVID-19 could impact the ability of health- and human services-related nonprofits to do their work, but concern is high for organizations in all charitable sectors.
  • Donors are most likely to donate to organizations close to home rather than internationally—but are split on addressing the health and economic impacts of the virus.
  • Donor-advised fund donors are more likely than general donors to ramp up their giving in response to the pandemic. Donor-advised fund donors tend to be more engaged in philanthropy and planful in regard to their charitable contributions, and their response to the COVID-19 pandemic reflects these qualities.


Learn more on the Fidelity Charitable website, and explore the data in this PDF.