As women’s wealth and economic power grows, their philanthropic opportunities are on the rise. But what are the specific attitudes and behaviors that women bring to the table regarding philanthropy? Our data outlines a picture of women’s giving that is fueled by empathy—in addition to revealing opportunities for women to hone their approach and implement more sophisticated giving strategies.

Women are actively engaged in a variety of ways of giving back

86 percent of women say they wish they could be doing more to make a difference. Women have long been the driving force behind giving decisions in many households, and our data shows that they use their time, money and buying power to create positive social change. Women are more likely than men to:

Be a recent volunteer

Purchase products from socially responsible businesses

Donate through an online giving platform or social media platform

Rainforest river

But opportunities exist for women to amplify their impact

Women integrate their values into many aspects of their lives, but one area where they lag men is participation in charitable investment strategies and knowledge about tax-savvy approaches to giving.

14% of women have spoken to a financial advisor about charitable planning strategies

Only 14 percent of women have spoken to a financial advisor about charitable planning strategies, compared to one-in-five men.

35% of women are unaware about charitable donations of these assets

More than a third of women who own stocks and bonds are unaware about charitable donations of these assets, compared to only 21 percent of men.

Two women with linked arms walking while wearing protective masks

COVID-19 and giving

Faced with an unprecedented crisis, women’s high level of commitment to giving reached new heights. The pandemic also erased the gender gap, as men made giving a greater priority and raised their interest to similar levels as women.  

Before the pandemic, women were more likely than men to say that giving was a significant part of their lives—but the crisis fueled men’s sense of generosity. In 2021, 81 percent of men said that charitable giving is now an important piece of their lives—nearly equal with the 84 percent of women who said so.

Real women making more of a difference

Fireman sisters

Sisters helping the homeless together

Two sisters are using both their donor-advised funds and their time to help understaffed nonprofits: cooking healthy meals for homeless women.


Debra Mailman

Selling everything to help others

Debra Mailman made a radical lifestyle change for a purpose: travel the world using her Microsoft-honed skills for disaster relief.


Charmaine Clay

Getting girls to college

A traveling childhood gave Charmaine Clay a look at living conditions across the country. Now, she’s giving back to help girls from disadvantaged backgrounds develop resilience—and make it to college.


Read more about these record-setting results and how our donors are using a Giving Account to make an impact.

Additional insights

Who we are

Fidelity Charitable is an independent public charity that offers one of the nation’s largest donor-advised fund programs, making charitable giving accessible, simple, and effective.

More insights into smarter giving

Wondering how to make your giving more satisfying and effective? Fidelity Charitable has four simple steps to boost your giving IQ, which will help you give even smarter.