STUDY: During Coronavirus, Americans Find Creative Ways To Give Back

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A new LendingTree study found that the donation habits of Americans changed in 2020 when the coronavirus pandemic hit. 

The study surveyed 1,020 American adults between June 12 and June 15 and found that those who had lost their jobs due to the pandemic were one of the groups most likely to donate to charity. 55% of Americans donated to charity in the past year, but out of the people who lost their jobs during the pandemic, 62% had donated. (RELATED: US Breaks Single-Day Record Of New Coronavirus Cases)

When asked if they had donated to a nonprofit in 2020, 39% said they had donated more than once, 17% had given once, and 45% said they hadn’t donated to charity. 

Coronavirus has changed the way people give, the study found. 37% of Americans had changed their donation habits by changing the amount they donated, seeking out new organizations to donate to, setting up a recurring donation, paused donations because of income loss, or other changes. 

Americans got creative when it came to helping those in need during the pandemic. Small businesses that suffered due to forced closures and loss of revenue were a popular way for people to give back. 7% of people purchased gift cards to these businesses, and as stores start to open up, 37% of respondents said they’re tipping more. Ordering take-out from local eateries while their dining rooms were closed is another popular method of support. 

Others continued paying for services that they couldn’t use due to COVID-19 restrictions, the study found. 16% of parents said they were continuing to pay their babysitter, and 9% of respondents opted to keep paying for their gym membership, despite not using the service. Overall, 30% said they are continuing to pay for services they aren’t using.