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Corporate Giving Trends Reveal Increase in Social Justice and Racial Equity Investments

New research from the Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose (CECP) shows a 90% increase in corporate community investments designated to Social Justice and Racial Equity compared to last year.

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Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose (CECP) has released its Giving in Numbers: 2022 Edition offering a look into the latest corporate giving trends. The report provides a snapshot of corporate social investments, employee volunteerism, engagement and, for the first time, foundation strategies.

We’re sharing topline findings from the report from the 222 companies that participated in the 2022 Giving in Numbers Survey on 2021 contributions.

The report outlines key community investment trends from 2021 including:

  • Community Investments Decreased from 2020 and Social Justice and Racial Equity Increased: Community investments decreased 20% from 2020 to 2021. According to the report, many companies shifted away from the large grants and product donations made in 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. By contrast, the percentage designated to Social Justice and Racial Equity increased by 90% between 2020 and 2021.
  • DEI Efforts Continue to Grow: 82% of companies and a median of 24% of community investment budgets were allocated to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). According to the report, Corporate Social Responsibility teams continue to work closely with Human Resources to support DEI efforts, particularly as DEI relates to their social investments.
  • Total Social Investment Measurement Grows: For 2021, the median Total Social Value reported was $34.3 million.
  • STEM Increased and Education Decreased: Over 40% of companies have STEM as a strategic focus area. Education in general decreased by 24% in prevalence as a strategic focus area.
  • Foundation Strategies: For the first time, CECP asked what types of grants foundations support. According to the report, most foundations fund program support and, to a lesser extent, general operating support. Corporate foundations are less likely to fund evaluation, research and capital grants.

Some other key findings are organized into sections, including:

State of the Industry: An analysis of the latest trends in the corporate community and social investment.

  • Median total community investments decreased by 20% from 2020 to 2021.
  • Median total community investments as a percentage of pre-tax profit in 2021 decreased 8% compared to 2019.
  • The Health Care industry, which drove community investment increases in 2020, decreased its median total community investments by 40% due to decreased demand for PPE and other non-cash medical donations.
  • COVID-19-related community investment has decreased significantly, but contributions to Social Justice and Racial Equity have increased.
  • Total Social Value has increased as more companies measure their Total Social Investment.

Community Investments Components: How total community investments are allocated toward program areas, funding type and international end recipients.

  • Foundation cash and non-cash investments had an increasing prevalence in total community investments as companies moved away from relying on direct cash contributions.
  • Environmental program funding remained low compared to other program areas but experienced a 31% increase in median funding compared to 2019.
  • International community investments continued to contract as domestic support took precedence.
  • Communications and Health Care companies continue to allocate most of their community investment via non-cash.
  • Disaster Relief remains the program area with the highest growth overall between 2019 and 2021, while Health and Social Services received the median highest allocation.
  • Funding towards a company’s strategic program areas is realigning as the need for basic supplies and support wanes since the early days of the pandemic.

Employee Engagement: How employees participated in community programs and volunteering.

  • In 2021, the average employee volunteer participation rate was 17%. According to the report, volunteer participation has not yet recovered to the pre-pandemic average of 29% in 2019.
  • Virtual volunteering remained the most popular volunteer program type.
  • Median volunteer hours logged were higher for companies that offered skills-based programs compared to companies that did not.
  • Median matching gifts declined between 2019 and 2021, as a dollar value and as a percentage of total cash community investment.

Want more?

Read the full report.

We invite you to connect with your corporate peers through CMF’s Corporate Online Community. Pose questions and gain insights from your colleagues around the state, engage in conversations and receive timely updates from the CMF team.