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What Does Charitable Giving Look Like In A World Post-COVID?

Without a doubt, 2020 was a year of upheaval. The life-altering COVID-19 pandemic didn’t just usher in a global health emergency — it also brought on economic hardships and a mental health crisis that changed the lives of people around the world.

However, in a year of darkness, businesses, leaders and neighbors stepped up to help those in need.

According to Candid and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy in just one year, $20.2 billion was donated to fight the effects of COVID-19, 44% of which was contributed by corporations. Another 27% of the contributions came from high net worth individuals like MacKenzie Scott, followed closely by 22% from independent foundations.

These contributions reflect an enormous need in a difficult year, especially in underserved populations around the world. But as vaccines become increasingly more available around the world, what does giving look like in the post-COVID era?

As the world recovers and moves on from the peak of the pandemic, its lingering effects will continue for years to come. Now more than ever, a focus on education around the world, justice for vulnerable groups and faith-based work that can deliver vital relief and support to those in need, will be critical to emerging from the COVID-19 crisis stronger than we were before.

The pandemic exacerbated existing challenges and required the attention of individuals, charitable organizations and nonprofits like the Venverloh Foundation. From a decline in access to education because of the technology gap, to food insecurity, to mental health emergencies during widespread lockdowns, these issues will not automatically get better as the world returns to normal. The Center for Disaster Philanthropy in its Philanthropy and COVID-19: Measuring one year of giving report recommends several ways for grantmakers and funders to ensure equitable recovery, including:
  • Sustain or increase giving and make unrestricted and flexible grants
  • Trust your grant partner and support operational and administrative costs
  • Target funding to communities that are systemically marginalized and disproportionately affected by COVID-19
  • Make grants outside of traditional grantmaking circles
  • Report funding data to Candid and ensure that grant descriptions are clear and explicit

Charitable giving and work in underserved communities around the world is absolutely necessary to provide hope and opportunity, even more now than pre-pandemic. Jon Venverloh and the Venverloh Family Foundation are committed to supporting partners who are improving the lives of others, in the U.S. and globally, during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

Identifying critical needs and funding gaps is especially important for communities in crisis and with existing disparities. This is especially critical for communities at risk during other disasters, such as Haiti, which experienced a devastating earthquake in August 2021. As we slowly return to life as we knew it pre-pandemic, the importance of giving back to our communities and neighbors ⁠— both near and far ⁠— should be a clear lesson from the pandemic and a practice we cannot leave behind when life seemingly returns to normal. We cannot forget the importance of charitable giving to provide people around the world stronger communities and better tomorrows.
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