Charitable Giving | Compassion International

Charitable Giving Facts
Committed to Integrity

charitable giving facts graphic

People are generous. In fact, one of the most astounding charitable giving facts is that more than 95 percent of people participate in charitable giving.

Giving a financial donation to a cause you believe in is an easy and effective way to show your support. And the facts about charitable giving show that it is a growing trend.

Now more than ever before, people are giving generous donations to causes they believe in. However, despite access to solid research and information, many people still feel a certain amount of distrust in how their money will be handled.

Integrity is one of our core values, and we work to make this evident in how we handle our finances. We know, based on the facts about charitable giving, more and more people care about where they donate their money.

We are committed to investing at least 80 percent of donations received into front-line ministry. In fact, this past year, 81.8 percent of expenses was spent on programs that directly benefit children.
Charity Navigator logo 

Compassion consistently receives high ratings for financial accountability and integrity.

Charity Navigator, America's largest charity evaluator, has awarded Compassion its highest rating — four stars — for 14 consecutive years, placing Compassion in the top 1 percent of all charities.

The facts about charitable giving
  • 95.4 percent of Americans participate at some level of charitable giving.
  • The average annual household charitable contribution is $2,974.
  • Total giving to charitable organizations increased to $335 in 2013, up 4.4 percent from 2012 (when adjusted for inflation).
  • Thirty-two percent of U.S. adults have less than positive feelings toward America's charitable organizations; three in 10 strongly agree that charitable organizations are honest and ethical in their use of donated funds.
  • In 2013, the largest source of charitable giving came from individuals at $241 billion, or 72 percent of total giving; followed by foundations ($50 billion/15 percent), bequests ($26 billion/eight percent), and corporations ($16 billion/five percent).
  • In 2013, the majority of charitable dollars went to religion (31 percent), education (16 percent), human services (12 percent), and grant making foundations (11 percent).
  • In 2014, approximately 6.7 percent of overall fundraising revenue, excluding grants, was raised online.
  • Online giving was up 8.9 percent in 2014, compared to the overall giving increase of 2.1 percent.
  • In 2014, 17.8 percent of all online giving happened during December, down from 22.4 percent in 2013
Top five reasons why people give:
  1. To meet critical, basic needs
  2. To give back to society by making the community a better place
  3. A belief that those with more should help those with less
  4. To bring about a desired impact or result
  5. A request for money was made

Sources: National Philanthropic Trust, Charity Navigator, Giving USA, American Enterprise Institute, Blackbaud and

How do the UN Sustainable Development Goals relate to Compassion?

several children look outside through a window

The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) directly parallel what Compassion does. But when it comes to goals and implementation we sometimes take a different approach. This is a quick analysis of the SDGs and how they most closely match our work, along with ways they overlap and differ.