Hurricane Matthew response drives over $2.5 million in donor-recommended grants to support victims
BOSTON, October 20, 2016 – Fidelity Charitable, an independent public charity, today announced a record-breaking first nine months of 2016 with $2.3 billion in donor-recommended grants, a 15% increase compared with last year. The number of grants also increased by 12% over the same period to more than 489,000 made to more than 90,100 nonprofit organizations. In July, Fidelity Charitable launched its $25 billion in 25 years initiative — a challenge to its donors to help the organization make a lifetime cumulative of $25 billion in grants to charities for its 25th anniversary. As of September 30, Fidelity Charitable has made over $24 billion in donor-recommended grants, bringing it close to that milestone.
Additionally, the organization saw a 5% increase in appreciated assets, such as stocks and private business shares, donated compared to last year. By giving appreciated assets directly to a charity with a donor-advised fund program, donors may have up to 20% more available for grant recommendations compared with giving the net cash proceeds, in line with a recent finding that Fidelity Charitable donors say they give more because of their donor-advised fund.1
Each year, the world experiences challenges in addressing disaster relief, and 2016 is no exception as Fidelity Charitable donors sought to provide support to victims around the world. Most recently, over $2.5 million in donor-recommended grants to those suffering from the effects of Hurricane Matthew were made to 180 different charities, with the American Red Cross and Partners in Health the most popular among donors.
In the summer of 2016, Louisiana also suffered from flooding that led to over $1.2 million in grants made to 197 different charities. The American Red Cross, Samaritan's Purse and the Salvation Army were the primary recipients of the grants. The ongoing refugee crisis in Syria also drove a large boost in grants in 2016, with more than $2.3 million disbursed to 188 organizations providing relief to those displaced by the civil war. Grants recommended to the International Rescue Committee, Catholic Relief Services and Doctors Without Borders were the most common.
“This year has seen many challenges for people globally, driven by natural disasters and armed conflict,” said Fidelity Charitable President Pamela Norley. “From a refugee crisis to historic flooding here at home and abroad, our donors have quickly mobilized to assist people all around the world when a crisis strikes. Over a two-week period, our donor-recommended grants provided more than $2.5 million in support to victims of Hurricane Matthew. At Fidelity Charitable, we are in a fortunate position to empower our donors to support the charitable causes they care most about — in the immediate aftermath of a tragedy and in the longer term.”
Since its founding in 1991, Fidelity Charitable has steadily expanded its support of the charitable sector, with particularly rapid growth over the past decade. In the past 10 years, the number of Giving Accounts has more than doubled to over 80,000, grant volumes tripled to more than 734,000 and grant dollars tripled to $3.1 billion.
In the last 25 years, Fidelity Charitable has continued to innovate and enhance its program to accommodate the diverse needs of its donor base of more than 132,000 donors. In addition to technological upgrades, in the past 12 months Fidelity Charitable expanded the assets it can accept to include bitcoin and added a more diversified range of Fidelity and non-Fidelity managed investment pool options.
1Fidelity Charitable annual donor surveys, conducted by Ipsos, an independent research firm, on behalf of Fidelity Charitable.
Fidelity Charitable is an independent public charity that has helped donors support more than 219,000 nonprofit organizations with more than $22 billion in grants. Established in 1991, Fidelity Charitable launched the first national donor-advised fund program. The mission of the organization is to further the American tradition of philanthropy by providing programs that make charitable giving simple, effective, and accessible. For more information about Fidelity Charitable, visit https://www.fidelitycharitable.org.