It's here! The Giving USA 2014 Report is here!

For nearly six decades, the Giving USA report has presented the most comprehensive charitable giving data available. The annual report, which is researched and written by the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, gives us a detailed overview of charitable giving in the U.S., by source and by sector.

It's finally here. And here's what you need to know from this year's report.

How much did U.S. donors give to charitable causes in 2013?

$335.17 billion (that's billion, with a "b"). That number represents gifts from individuals, foundations and corporations.

How do the numbers break down by source?

Individuals

72%

$240.60 billion

(+4.2% from 2012)

Bequests

8%

$27.73 billion

(+8.7%)

Foundations

15%

$48.96 billion

(+5.7%)

Corporations

5%

$17.88 billion

(-1.9%)

How do the numbers break down by sector?

Religion

31%

$105.53 billion

(-0.2% from 2012)

Education

16%

$52.07 billion

(+8.9%)

Human Services

12%

$41.51 billion

(+2.2%)

Gifts to Foundations

11%

$35.74 billion

(-15.5%)

Health

10%

$31.86 billion

(+6.0%)

Public-Society Benefit

7%

$23.38 billion

(+8.5%)

Arts, Culture and Humanities

5%

$16.66 billion

(+7.8%)

International

4%

$14.93 billion

(-6.7%)

Environment/Animals

3%

$9.72 billion

(+7.5%)

Gifts to Individuals

1%

$3.26 billion

How did 2013 giving compare to 2012?

Overall, charitable giving was up 4.4% in 2013 over last year.

Did some sectors fare better (or worse) than 2012?

Education, Arts and Culture and Environment/Animals were the big winners in 2013, with giving up 8.9%, 7.8% and 7.5% respectively. People continue to give the most, overall, to churches, places of worship and other religious causes; however, giving to the Religion category was flat in 2013. Giving to foundations was down 15.5% from last year.

What should I take away from this?

Individuals (and bequests) continue to be the single largest source of gifts, making up 80% of total giving. It's imperative that you have a solid development plan that identifies, cultivates, solicits and, most importantly, stewards those individuals who are passionate about the work you do and who will support your cause.

If you don't have an annual gift program, start one. This year. If you're not thanking each and every donor for each and every gift, you need to start. Today. Then be sure to take the time to identify your top donors. (I know, you thanked them already.) Thank them again. You'll be glad you did.

Send me a message and tell me how you thank your top-tier donors. I love hearing from you.


TIPS OF THE TRADE

Remember, there's more to grant writing than just "writing." Also remember, there's more to fundraising than just grants.

If you're interested in learning more about the Giving USA report, check out these resources

Get your own copy of the Giving USA 2014 report. (Report highlights are free.)

Read key findings from the Giving USA 2014 report

View an infographic that summarizes key findings from the Giving USA 2014 report


Third Sector Consulting helps nonprofits find more funders and win more grants.

Send a message to start the conversation and learn how Laura can help you and your organization.