Sharp surge in charity donations in Russia in 2016: Russia to join #GivingTuesday for the first time

November 29, 2016

#GivingTuesday, the global day of grassroots giving, spanning five continents, is coming to Russia for the first time on 29 November.

On its eve, Yandex.Money, Russia’s leading online payment service, studied how Russians donate online using Yandex.Checkout, Russia’s most popular payment solution for websites, and, a crowdfunding platform by Yandex.Money, which enables individuals to create private webpages to raise money for a good cause. Figures show a sharp rise in online donations over the year: according to Yandex.Money stats, in 2016 Russians spent more than 660 million Russian rubles (~$10 million) on charitable activities — a 50% increase compared to last year. The number of people donating with Yandex.Money almost doubled this year.

The biggest donation made via Yandex.Money in 2016 was 250 000 Russian rubles (~$3800). On average, Russians spend 641 RUB (~$10) on charity donations with people transferring bigger sums to organizations compared to individuals — 777 RUB (~$12) and 463 RUB (~$7) respectively.

As compared to 2015, Yandex.Money saw a 45% increase in the amount of money donated to charity funds, while the number of people who send money to funds rose by 10%. As to crowdfunding, the total sum of money raised grew by 70%, while the number of people who donate doubled. The majority of online transfers are made from e-wallets and bank cards.

#GivingTuesday is a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. Russia is going to be the 71th country to join the movement. Last year on #GivingTuesday donors gave $116.7 million to charity, signaling a significant boost in online donations worldwide. More than 1.3 million tweets mentioning the #GivingTuesday hashtag were shared during the day — an increase of 86 percent from 2014. Education, the environment, animals, health care, and international affairs were the leading causes shared on social media.

Celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving (in the U.S.), #GivingTuesday kicks off the charitable season, when many focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving. It is a movement to create an international day of giving at the beginning of the Christmas and holiday season. #GivingTuesday was started in 2012 as a response to commercialization and consumerism in the post-Thanksgiving season. The global antidote to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday is a day used by people, charities and businesses to hook activism and to do something for a good cause — and it is not limited to fundraising.