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Foundation Giving

To chart your organization’s performance and inform your fundraising strategies for the year ahead, check out the following highlights, trends, and statistics with this review of giving to and by foundations.

Year-over-Year Giving to Foundations

Blackbaud estimates that in 2020, giving to foundations increased just slightly, by 0.9% compared to 2019.1 We expect to see growth and change in this area, as avenues for giving like donor-advised funds (DAFs) expand in response to changes in supporter preferences and incentives.

Year-over-Year Giving by Foundations

According to Giving USA, giving by foundations totaled $75.69 billion in 2019, which represented 17% of all charitable giving.2 2019 figures increased by 2.5% compared to 2018 and included grantmaking by independent, community, and operating foundations.

Year-over-Year Giving by Foundation Type

And, according to Giving USA, giving by independent foundations, a type of private foundation usually founded by a family, individual, or group of individuals increased 2.2% in 2019 compared to 2018. Operating foundations, which use most of their income to operate their own programs, increased their giving by 1.3% compared to 2018. Community foundations, which are comprised of community leaders that make grants for local programs only, increased their giving by 5.6% in 2019.

In 2019, giving by family foundations totaled $34.79 billion. Giving by family foundations is estimated to be 46% of total foundation giving in 2019.