While contributions from foundations, corporations, governments, and individuals resulted in an unprecedented $121 billion in disaster-related funding in 2020, all but 4 percent was given primarily in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, an analysis by Candid and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP) finds.

Based on data from Candid and 12 other sources, the ninth edition of the annual report, Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy 2022: Data to Drive Decisions (19 pages, PDF), found that overall funding showed a four-fold increase from the $30 billion distributed in 2019, though non-pandemic disaster relief was broadly unchanged. Overall, foundations and public charities contributed $5.2 billion toward disaster funding compared to $352 million in 2019 (a near 15-fold increase), while an analysis of grants data from 222 U.S. foundations showed a near 19-fold increase from $110.7 million in 2019 to $2.1 billion in 2020.

The report also found a similar surge in non-foundation philanthropy through donor-advised funds (DAFs), donor platforms, and direct giving. Individual donors contributed $494 million through DAFs managed by Fidelity Charitable (more than 24 times the amount in 2019) and $98 million through DAFs at Vanguard Charitable (more than 16 times) and gave $16.4 million through Network for Good (up from $11.3 million) and $28.6 million through GlobalGiving (up from $5.1 million). In addition, Candid identified $5.8 billion in disaster-related funding from high-net-worth individuals.

The report, while striking a positive note reflecting on the outpouring of investments to address the pandemic, warns that non-COVID disaster-related funding was largely unchanged compared to prior years. Among foundations, Candid found that $13.7 million of disaster-related funding was directed to complex humanitarian emergencies, $1.5 million to man-made accidents, $113.2 million in general disaster relief, and another $94.8 million to relief efforts related to natural hazards and severe weather—roughly $223 million, representing less than 2 percent of all disaster-related funding. As natural hazards and extreme weather events continue to grow and become more dangerous due in large part to climate change, their negative impact on under-resourced and underserved populations increases exponentially.

Read the full article about disaster relief funding at Philanthropy News Digest.