Donations to non-profits in Sweden last year soared to record levels, amounting to over SEK 9 billion (€850 million), according to new data released by Give Sweden (Giva Sverige) last week.
The value of donations rose by 11% from 2018 to 2019, with growth in legacy giving and public collections fuelling the spike. Over the past six years, income from gifts in Wills has risen by 80% to SEK 1.6 billion (€150 million).
Charlotte Rydh, secretary general at Give Sweden (pictured):
“Now, we’re in a very different position with the corona crisis. The majority of our member organisations are predicting a decline in revenue in 2020. But, last year’s growth in charitable giving has bred a real sense of optimism that the sector can and will recover.
“It is really positive that more people have discovered the option of leaving a gift in their Will. As it stands, only 20 per cent of Swedes write Wills today. Going forward, I hope that more people will start to think about what they want to leave behind, and then see the opportunity to include important purposes in their Will.”
In total, Give Sweden’s members raised SEK 9.1 billion in gifts and grants. Seen over a ten-year period, charitable donations have more than doubled, from SEK 4.4 billion in 2009 to SEK 9.1 billion in 2019.
The figures, set out in the association’s annual report, reveals that the public accounts for 69% of all gifts and grants to non-profit organisations, company giving accounts for 10%, other organisations donate 13% and the Postcode Lottery 8%.
New research will show who donates through their Will
A research project is currently underway at Uppsala University, exploring how the Swedes choose to distribute their inheritance after their death.
Leading the research, Mikael Elinder, associate professor and associate professor of economics, says:
“In our research we are investigating what separates those who choose to leave a gift in their Will to non-profit organisations from those who do not. Those who have children or partners when they write a will on average spend less than 0.1 percent of their inheritance to charity. Our research aims to help understand these patterns and what they say about altruism; who we care about and how much.”