Covid-19, and the many crises it is creating, has pushed philanthropic grants to new highs this spring, two charitable organizations said recently.

Fidelity Charitable reported an 18% increase in grants by its donors this year through April 30 versus the year-earlier period—a total of $2.5 billion in grants. This includes $236 million raised specifically for Covid-19 relief. In April, Fidelity Charitable asked its donors to raise at least $200 million by May for pandemic relief, and donors surpassed that amount, the charity said.

Another organization called Giving Tuesday Now (a global effort to raise money for pandemic relief), said there was a spike in gifts in 145 countries, although the organization did not have a total as of the end of April. Giving Tuesday is usually marked on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving. A special effort was created specifically for Tuesday May 5.

That day, “millions of people expressed their generosity through acts of kindness, donations of goods, time and money, notes of compassion, advocacy for causes, and care for family and friends,” said Giving Tuesday Now.

Fidelity Charitable said the $236 million raised for Covid-19 relief will support more than 9,600 charities. In addition, “the $2.5 billion in grants from our donors made so far this year will go a long way in helping sustain all nonprofits through this crisis and beyond,” said Pamela Norley, president of Fidelity Charitable.

Human services charities, such as food banks and homeless shelters, saw the largest increase in grants so far this year with a 68% increase over 2019.

Organizations benefiting society, which include community foundations and social advocacy groups, saw a 37% increase in grant volumes compared with early 2019.

Increased giving to medical relief organizations, many of which operate domestically and internationally, drove a 36% increase in grant volumes in the international affairs charitable sector compared with this time last year, according to Fidelity Charitable.