Published on January 23, 2024

The power of collective compassion in times of crisis

As we reflect on 2023, it's clear that it was a time of profound challenge and polarization. Yet, the collective action of companies and their people served as a unifying force for humanity through record-setting giving and volunteering — and Benevity served as a conduit to create some incredible impact.

In 2023, the Benevity platform facilitated a staggering $3.2 billion in donations, a 14% increase from the previous year. More than 2.3 million people donated, representing a 22% increase over 2022. This remarkable growth in donations and participation highlights the increasing expectation that businesses sustain action in addressing global issues. 

Let’s take a closer look at the top nonprofits supported by companies and their people last year, and what drove giving behavior. 


Top causes show a surge in humanitarian aid for the people of Israel and Palestine

The last year was marked by significant global events, including the Israel-Hamas war. In these times of crisis, employees expect their companies not just to acknowledge the issues but to actively participate in providing emergency relief and humanitarian aid. This expectation was affirmed in the State of Corporate Purpose 2023 report, where an overwhelming 93% of CSR leaders believed in the necessity for companies to act as a unifying force for humanity — more than they did in previous years. And companies stepped up. In the last quarter of 2023, $83.5 million in donations was directed by companies and their people towards nonprofits providing aid to those affected in the region.

Notably, organizations like the Palestine Children's Relief Fund (ranked 4 vs. 267 in 2022), American Friends Of Magen David Adom (ranked 6 vs. 3,012 in 2022), Magen David Adom in Israel (ranked 15 vs. 70,763 in 2022), Islamic Relief (ranked 9 vs. 15 in 2022) and the Palestine Red Crescent Society-Al-Bireh Branch (ranked 17 vs. 13,835 in 2022), which provided emergency medical, disaster relief and humanitarian assistance to the people of Israel and Palestine, saw unprecedented support. Moving into the top 20 causes, their rankings surged dramatically compared to 2022, illustrating a significant shift in donor focus towards immediate humanitarian aid.

Response to the world’s most pressing issues

Causes supporting human rights, food security, health-focused nonprofits and those responding to environmental disasters like the Hawaii fires and the Turkey-Syria earthquake also saw increased donations from companies and their employees.

The new normal: A crisis-driven world

Giving in 2023 was largely shaped by conflict and crisis. Sona Khosla, Chief Impact Officer at Benevity, summarized the year and Benevity's role in this landscape:

"Unfortunately, a crisis-driven world has become the new normal. Support for international and humanitarian crises was profound last year, fueled by natural disasters and a deeply divisive Israel-Hamas war, which displaced the focus on local community support that had been a hallmark of the recent ‘quiet giving’ trend. Benevity is proud to have helped companies around the world leverage technology to rapidly engage employees and customers in giving to trusted organizations that transcend the poles of war and allow people to support people during a difficult time."

A rise in granting and volunteering

In addition to an increase in donations, Benevity also reported a 38% growth in grants processed on its platform and a 57% increase in volunteering participation in 2023. This underscores the multi-faceted approach companies are taking to drive social impact and advance progress on critical issues. 

Looking ahead

As we step into 2024, the lessons from the past year are clear. In times of division and crisis, there lies a potent opportunity for companies and individuals to come together and act as a unifying force for good. Through technology, compassion and a shared commitment to humanity, Benevity and its client community continue to respond to the world's challenges — one purpose-driven action at a time.

Read the press release: Benevity Releases its Top Charitable Causes Supported by Companies and Their People in 2023