Vanguard Charitable donors bucked a national trend of declining giving in 2023 and increased grasnting by 39% for the year, the organization announced.

The increased granting to $2.6 billion last year marks the seventh straight year the nonprofit and sponsor of donor-advised funds has set new records in grants that were authorized. The increase for 2022 over the previous year was 5%. In 2023, Vanguard Charitable donors made 209,000 grants to 56,000 charities, Vanguard Charitable reported in its annual report.

“The level of granting last year by Vanguard Charitable donors was fantastic,” Jodi Rosen, chief development officer, said in an interview. This was in a year that Giving USA reported an overall decline of 3%.

“We thought Vanguard Charitable’s giving for the year might see a slight decline because of the uncertain market, but instead donors once again increased giving,” Rosen said. “This shows our donors are resilient, as well as generous.”

The great wealth transfer from baby boomers to the next generation also is making more people think about legacy planning and giving strategies. “Using a donor advised fund is a great way to start the family conversation about building their legacy,” Rebecca Moffett, president of Vanguard Charitable, said in a statement.

Responding to U.S. disasters and turmoil in other parts of the world, donors granted more than $70 million to more than 1,000 nonprofits in support of disaster relief in 2023. Additionally, there was an increased focus on human services, with nearly double the dollars granted to the cause area compared to 2022.

Vanguard Charitable said the top five areas for grants were, in descending order, human services, religion, education, health, and environment and wildlife.

The top 10 nonprofits supported by Vanguard Charitable donors by number of grants issued include Doctors Without Borders USA, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, World Central Kitchen, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, the International Rescue Committee, Samaritan's Purse, Cru (Campus Crusade for Christ), the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, UNICEF USA, and the American Civil Liberties Union Foundation. These charities consistently make the top 10 list, Rosen said.