New Survey: Nearly 1 in 4 American donors with a charitable giving budget increased their giving due to rising inflation

Nov 15, 2022

Malvern, Pa., November 15, 2022 - An online survey of more than 2,000 U.S. adults conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of Vanguard Charitable, a leading nonprofit that administers donor-advised funds (DAFs), found that 60% of American donors with a charitable giving budget1 say rising inflation had no impact on their giving or caused them to increase their giving over the past 12 months, with nearly 1 in 4 (24%) saying they increased their giving.


“In a time when nearly every American is feeling the impact of inflation, it is inspiring to see firsthand the power of having a charitable giving budget,” says Rebecca Moffett, president of Vanguard Charitable. “When funds are intentionally set aside and committed for charity, it makes an incredible difference in driving critical missions forward and supporting those most in need, no matter the state of the market. We see this with our own donors, who leverage donor-advised funds to be more responsive in moments of crisis, and more resilient during moments of economic uncertainty.”


American donors are maximizing charitable impact through intentional planning 


American donors with a charitable giving budget are giving more, recognize the importance of being responsive to the needs of nonprofits navigating economic uncertainty, and are thinking ahead for how they can continue to support organizations.

  • Increased generosity: American donors who included charitable giving in their annual budget gave nearly four times more ($2,268 vs. $626) than those who did not budget for giving over the past 12 months.
  • Giving when it is needed most: 86% of Americans who have a charitable giving budget say it is important for them to support charities financially (i.e., donating money) during times of economic uncertainty (i.e., rising inflation, recession) compared to 72% with no giving budget.
  • Looking to the future: Looking ahead at the next 12 months and the possibility of rising inflation, donors who have a charitable giving budget were two times more likely to say that they plan to give more than they normally would compared to donors without a charitable giving budget (20% vs. 10%).

Giving is on the rise, especially with younger generations


  • The survey found that 45% of American donors have an annual charitable giving budget, similar to the year prior (44%).
  • Additionally, 74% of Americans donated to charity in past 12 months, with younger Americans (ages 18-44) being more likely to say they donated more money than they normally would have as a result of inflation, compared to older Americans (ages 45+) (18% versus 8%).


Vanguard Charitable donors' generosity increased as market uncertainty grew


From June through September of 2022, a heightened time of market uncertainty, the average Vanguard Charitable donor grant size increased by 14%, which resulted in an overall 4% increase in grant dollars issued to charities in need, compared to the same time period in 2021. Unrestricted giving also increased by 6% in the same time period year-over-year.


Both trends indicate that donors with a charitable giving plan and funds already committed to charity in a DAF were able to give more to nonprofits during a time of great need. Also, the uptick in unrestricted giving shows that donors were implementing trust-based philanthropy, meaning that they granted to nonprofits without a directive of how the funds should be used. Instead, nonprofits were able to apply those donations where they would make the most impact and drive their mission forward.


“As more traditional streams of funding continue to evolve amid market and economic changes, ongoing humanitarian emergencies around the world persist, requiring us to continue seeking sustainable revenue to effectively respond to the needs of today,” said David Miliband, President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee. “Donor-advised funds offer the reliable and valuable support organizations like the International Rescue Committee depend on to drive their missions forward. The strategic support of DAF donors and platforms enables the IRC to make immediate and long-term impact as we help people affected by humanitarian crises to survive, recover, and rebuild their lives.”


Strategic planning is a key part of DAF donors’ charitable giving, which is why Vanguard Charitable offers varying resources to support their efforts, including this publicly available budgeting guide that supports the development of a purposeful and flexible charitable giving plan.


For more information about Vanguard Charitable or giving through donor-advised funds, please visit  


Survey Method:

This survey was conducted online within the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Vanguard Charitable from September 20-22, 2022 among 2,065 U.S. adults ages 18 and older. The sampling precision of Harris online polls is measured by using a Bayesian credible interval. For this study, the sample data is accurate to within +/- 2.8 percentage points using a 95% confidence level. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables and subgroup sample sizes, please contact Katie Miller at


About Vanguard Charitable 

Vanguard Charitable is a leading U.S. nonprofit organization that fulfills its mission to increase philanthropic giving by administering the nation's highest-value donor-advised fund—a tax-effective way to consolidate, accrue, and grant assets to charity. With an emphasis on exceptional service, best-in-class investments, and industry-low costs, Vanguard Charitable has granted more than $14 billion to charity since it was founded by Vanguard2 in 1997 as an independent 501(c)(3) organization. In 2020, Vanguard Charitable launched the first-of-its-kind Nonprofit Aid VisualizerTM (NAVi) to help donors locate charities in the communities most vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic. Vanguard Charitable has since launched a new edition of NAVi focused on addressing hunger and homelessness. Learn more about Vanguard Charitable here



Vanguard Charitable: 
Maggie Moran




Published Date

 1 A charitable giving budget is defined as an intentional line item for charitable donations in an individual’s annual financial budget.


 2 Although Vanguard provides certain investment management and administrative services to Vanguard Charitable pursuant to a service agreement, Vanguard Charitable is not a program or activity of Vanguard. A majority of Vanguard Charitable’ s trustees are independent of Vanguard.






Session timed out

For security reasons, you have been automatically logged out. To login, please click close and sign into your account.

Log out successful

This account is frozen. Contact us at
Request for user ID submitted

Your request was successfully submitted.Your user ID will be sent to the email address we have on file for you. Please contact us if you do not receive your user ID.
There are no open accounts associated with this User ID. Please contact us at
Online access to your account is currently disabled. Please contact us at to resolve this matter.

Log out successful

Login with your new User ID.

Log out successful

Login to access your account.
You do not currently have valid roles for any accounts. Please contact us at

A technical error has occurred

In order to maintain information security, your log-in request was canceled or your previous session ended.
Don't worry. You can log back in at any time.


Technical error. Please try again.

Log out successful

Login to update your phone number.

Technical error

You have reached a technical error and this session is not currently available.
Your email address was successfully verified.
Your account has been unblocked. Click login to access your account.

It’s not you. It’s us!

We are experiencing a technical error and we’re working on it. Please try again later.

You are unauthorized to access this page.


Maintenance fee may be applied

Accounts having a balance below $25,000 may be subject to an annual maintenance fee of $250.


You are eligible for special rates

Our premier clients enjoy reduced pricing to further maximize their impact.

Our representatives are happy to guide you through.

No, take me back


Click OK to cancel your enrollment.

Click Cancel to continue opening your account.