What Russians Donated Money To in 2020

How did the pandemic change charity?
Taisia Sidorova | 14 April 2021
What Russians Donated Money To in 2020
Photo: freepik

Experts from the Need Help Foundation and CloudPayments have studied how charitable donations have changed in 2020 and 2021. If at the beginning of the pandemic, people willingly helped those who were most affected by coronavirus, then by the end of the year the share of support for environmental projects increased.

Helping Physicians and Those Affected by the Pandemic

Last spring the number of donations to nonprofit organizations increased. People were actively making one-time payments. There was also a steady increase in recurring payments.

The benefactors’ activity was noted by nonprofit organizations which support socially vulnerable groups of the population and doctors. People wanted to support those who were most affected by the pandemic, including the elderly, doctors, and low-income citizens.

Last April one-time donations increased by 136% compared to March, 2020 and these were the peak values. At the same time, recurrent payments grew from 4 to 17% from last March to May. This difference in growth rates between one-time and recurrent payments is typical for emergency situations.

People most of all helped socially unprotected groups. Later, they started to donate to help doctors more.

The average donation to medicine in 2020 was 938 rubles.

The average donation to socially unprotected groups of the population was 1,082 rubles.

Growth of auto payments

In 2020, Russians more often chose to support different foundations systematically.

In January 2021, the number of auto payments increased by 1.5-2 times compared to January 2020. Meanwhile, the number of recurrent payments to medicine and to socially vulnerable groups has doubled.

Whom people helped in December 2020

The share of one-time donations to nonprofit organizations traditionally increases in December. Moreover, the growth is noted in all areas of charity.

In December donations to socially unprotected groups increased by 96%, by 34% – to doctors, by 220% – to the environment compared to November, 2020.

After the New Year’s holidays, the number of donations was greatly reduced.

Donations to the environment increased

The growth of charitable donations to the environment occurred after the environmental disaster in Kamchatka. There, in September 2020, a massive death of sea animals was recorded. The topic of ecology became the main topic in the media.

Last October, the number of donations to the environment increased by 21% compared to the previous month, while one-time payments more than doubled – they increased by 113%. This was the highest rise in donations for this line of philanthropy in an entire year, excluding New Year’s.

Although people also supported environmental projects last spring, there was no such leap.

The average donation to the environment in 2020 was 539 rubles.

Human rights

During the pandemic, human rights became one of the areas that people supported the least. One-off donations to this area increased in May.

A sharp rise in donations to human rights support was recorded in January, 2021. The rise in donations was 200% compared to December, 2020. Meanwhile, December, as noted above, is one of the most successful months for fundraising activities of nonprofit organizations.

One-time donations to human rights increased by 8 times in January 2021 compared to December, 2020.

The average donation to human rights support in 2020 was 1,001 rubles.

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