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Furry Friends Most Important to Gen Xs, Millennials When it Comes to Charitable Donations, According to GWI

NEW YORK / AGILITYPR.NEWS / August 11, 2021 / Furry Friends Most Important to Gen Xs, Millennials When it Comes to Charitable Donations, According to GWI

GWI Report Finds Clear Differences in How Generations Prefer to Manage Their Charitable Donations 

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New research from GWI, a leading polling and audience targeting company, sheds light on the charitable causes Americans value most, and broken out by generation it becomes even more clear where our hearts - and wallets - really lie. From animal welfare and health / medical research causes to military / veteran, racial justice, natural disaster and environmental causes, US adults’ preferences for charitable efforts run the gamut. 

Top Trends and Attitudes

  1. On average, animal welfare charities ranked as most important for Americans who currently support charities; Millennials, Gen Xs and Baby Boomer generations also listed animal welfare charities as the most important cause. 

  1. Only 10 percent of US adults said COVID-19 relief causes are important to them.

  1. Baby Boomers are most likely to support health / medical research, homelessness / poverty, and military / veterans causes compared to other generations. 

  1. Millennials that support charities in some form are most likely to support causes related to the COVID-19 relief and the environment compared to other generations. 

Animal Welfare, Health / Medical Research, Homeless Causes Top Three for US Adults 

(average US adults that supports charities)

While the types and causes that Americans chose to support differed between age groups, it is clear that the US is a nation that cares deeply about social welfare. According to the survey, average US adults said animal welfare causes are most important to them when considering their support for a charity (30%), followed by health / medical research causes (28%), homelessness / poverty causes (28%), environmental (23%) and educational causes (19%). 

Additionally, 16 percent of US adults that currently support charities in some form said natural disaster relief causes were important when considering their support for a charity, and another 16 percent listed social / community development as important to them; 11 percent said supporting LGBTQIA+ causes was important. 

Gen X Most Likely to Support Causes That Help Animals in Need (of Gen Xs/adults who support charitable causes): 

Gen X adults have grown increasingly fond of supporting our furry friends as this age group is the most likely generation to throw their support at animal welfare charities. 

  • Animal welfare: more than one-third (35%) of Gen Xs that support charitable causes lend their support to animal welfare charities, compared to 32 percent of Baby Boomers and 30 percent of Millennials; on average 30 percent of US adults say animal welfare charities are important to them, - the highest ranked charitable cause for the general population who said they support charities in some form.  
  • Health / medical research (30%), homelessness / poverty (29%), education (23%) also rank high with Gen X when it comes to their financial donations. 

Millennials Go Green for Charitable Donations 

In addition to throwing their support behind animal welfare groups, Millennials are passionate about environmental causes, health / medical research charities and educational causes.  

  • Environment: Millennials are more likely than other generation to support causes that revolve around the environment (28%), compared to 22 percent of Gen Xs and 18 percent of Baby Boomers.
  • Social and community development causes also rank high among Millennials when it comes to charitable causes: 19 percent said these charities are important to them, the highest percentage out of all other age groups. 
  • COVID relief: 17 percent of Millennials said charities relating to COVID-19 relief are important when considering financial donations, the highest percent of any generation. 

Methodology: This data comes from GWI monthly Zeitgeist study, fielded between June 25- July 2 2021, and is representative of 2,002 U.S. internet users, of which 1,650 support charities in some form. 


Kathy Allen



Phone: 2028217513