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Overall Giving

Charitable giving continued to grow in 2021 in response to the ongoing needs associated with the pandemic. While the world adjusted to a new normal, the growth in giving exceeded nearly everyone’s expectations. Not only did both overall giving and online giving grow, but the average donor was more generous than ever. Charities of all sizes were rewarded for their resilience, and donors demonstrated their enduring dedication to supporting the causes they care about. 

In 2021, overall charitable giving in the United States increased 9% from the previous year. The average donation for K–12 schools was $1,494. The average online donation in the K–12 education subsector was $1,640, positioning them among the leaders within this trend. K–12 schools received 6.4% of total fundraising from online giving in 2021. See the 2021 Charitable Giving Report for more.  

For more information on this topic, please visit: Total Overall Giving


Past 12 Months

Data from the Blackbaud Institute Index, which captures quarterly giving statistics, shows that in the last 12 months, K–12 schools experienced an 7.5% increase in overall fundraising and a 11.7% increase in online fundraising compared to the previous 12 months ending December 2020. Check out the Blackbaud Institute Index for more insight.

For more information on this topic, please visit: Total Overall Giving


Snapshot of the Sector

Charitable giving in the United States overall has made up about 2% of total GDP for more than 40 years, slightly higher in boom years and slightly lower in bust years. The two years 2020-2021 were no exception, with a dip and rebound in overall fundraising. The composition of that fundraising has moved increasingly online, with K–12 schools at the forefront of that trend. In 2020, one of every seven dollars contributed to K–12 school was given online, an increase 8.7% over the previous year. 

For fundraisers, this suggests that building relationships with prospective donors will require a broader array of tools conducting through a wider variety of channels.