SINGAPORE. National digital charity giving platform give.sg, which allows people to donate to some 600 registered non-profit organizations in Singapore, saw its first drop in donations in 2023 after four consecutive years.
The platform, which also allows users to volunteer and fundraise for causes, raised $94.6 million in 2023, down 3.5 percent from the $98 million it raised in 2022.
In addition, the number of unique users decreased for the third time since 2021, after seeing a surge in donors at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020.
In 2020, there were about 177,000 donors, but since then the number has decreased every year. The National Volunteering and Philanthropy Center (NVPC), which oversees give.sg, said there were about 114,000 donors in 2023.
Despite the increase in the number of campaigns on the platform, people who started their own fundraisers collected fewer donations in 2023, according to the NVPC. A total of $9.9 million was raised through more than 2,400 campaigns in 2023, compared to $10.8 million from more than 1,800 campaigns in 2022.
Breaking down the numbers, NVPC Chief Executive Officer Tony So said the drop in donor numbers and donation amounts could be due to the post-pandemic correction, when donors may have diversified their donation methods or returned to offline giving.
Rising inflation and cost-of-living concerns over the past couple of years may have also affected donations, he said.
Mr. Soh noted that the number of donors, donations and fundraising campaigns remains much higher than before the pandemic.
The NVPC noted that despite fewer unique donors, the average donation per donor has steadily increased over the years, rising from about $530 in 2020 to about $830 in 2023.
Mr So believes that the spirit of generosity among Singaporeans will remain strong in 2024 despite economic and geopolitical uncertainties. He said they consistently demonstrate an extraordinary willingness to donate and volunteer for causes that resonate with them.
“While the macro environment may create headwinds for the sector, it is also an opportunity for Singaporeans to step up and come together to lift people’s spirits and strengthen communities,” he said.
Other online donation and crowdfunding platforms have shared preliminary reports for 2023.
Give.Asia, a Singapore-based fundraising platform, reported that philanthropy is on the rise in Singapore, with more people seen on its platform in 2023 compared to a year earlier. He did not provide details of the amounts raised in both years.
However, its CEO Pong Yu Min said the average amount per donor was about 20 percent lower at $80 per donation. He suggested more fundraising opportunities as charities solicit donations themselves.
“Conventional charities are becoming more tech-savvy with new websites, social media marketing campaigns and a push for more online giving,” said Mr Pong.