Since the outbreak of the virus, national giving platform Giving.sg has amassed $2.2 million in donations – a year-on-year increase of almost $900,000.

Does adversity breed altruism? The answer is a resounding ‘yes’, based on data from Singapore’s national online giving platform.  

Despite concerns over Covid-19, donation figures on Giving.sg – a platform run by the National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre and which supports over 500 charities – for the month of February show that the Singaporean spirit is shining bright amid dark times. Donations to charities via the platform have spiked, with more than SGD$2.2 million raised in February alone. This is $898,576 more than the donations made in the same period last year.

  Feb 2018 Feb 2019 Feb 2020
Total donation amts on Giving.sg $1,177,654 $1,349,781 $2,248,357

Above: 3-year donation figures for the month of February have shown a rising trend, with a significant spike this year.

While three-year donation figures for the month of February have been on the rise, this year’s leap is higher-than-usual at 67%, compared to a more modest 14% increase between 2018 and 2019 – signaling that Singaporeans are more willing to help others during uncertain times.

Of the total donations made in the month of February, 15% (or $343,712) has been raised for charities running fundraising campaigns under the banner of #SGUnited, a movement that was launched on Feb 20th for Singaporeans to step forward and respond to Covid-19. These charities (listed here on Giving.sg’s SGUnited campaign page) are responding to the most pressing community needs right now, from providing additional care for the elderly, children and low-income groups, supporting healthcare workers, to food distribution drives.

To date, 19 fundraising campaigns have been set up as part of #SGUnited. Charities like The Food Bank and Food From The Heart, have garnered significant donations with $17,288 and $12,475 raised respectively in the month of February.

Donations aside, Giving.sg data points to a general upsurge of altruistic behaviour this February.

  • Total volunteer signups on Giving.sg have hit 1,080, up from 766 in February 2018 (a 40% increase)
  • There have been a total of 133 fundraising campaigns for charities created on Giving.sg, up from 74 campaigns in February 2018 (a 79% increase)
Above: As part of #SGUnited, Yong-En Care Centre is fundraising to distribute food ration packs.
(Source: Yong-En Care Centre)

Perhaps it is true that crises bring out the best in us! Here are some of our favourite stories of other-centredness, seen on both Giving.sg and elsewhere in Singapore:

Almost $200,000 raised in 3 weeks for healthcare front-liners

To give thanks to the healthcare staff around us, Community Foundation Singapore set up the Sayang Sayang Fund which has raised $197,447 in just 3 weeks on Giving.sg. The fund was established to support the safety and transport of healthcare professionals.

Overwhelming response from volunteers to pack food for the needy

Food From The Heart was initially concerned when many of their volunteers dropped out of food packing sessions, out of fear of gathering in groups and common spaces. In response, the charity jumped on Giving.sg to recruit new volunteers. Food From The Heart has since conducted 8 packing sessions in February, and will be conducting another 2 next month.

Above: Hard at work and heart at work, Food From The Heart volunteers pack food for those in need.
(Source: Food From The Heart)

Upcycling 175 Valentine’s Day bouquets for healthcare workers

Refresh Flowers, a volunteer-run ground-up initiative, encouraged Singaporeans to donate their Valentines’ Day bouquets to appreciate frontline and healthcare staff. A total of 175 bouquets were repurposed on that special day!

A healthcare staff looking happy to receive flowers and thank you notes from these children!
(Source: Tan Tock Seng Hospital)

O’Joy Care Services providing hand sanitisers to the elderly

The voluntary welfare organisation is assisting seniors under their care by pumping hand sanitisers into smaller bottles and then distributing them to the vulnerable and isolated.

Leaders of Good stepping up

Individuals are doing their part too. For instance, Benjamin Wah, an entrepreneur, donated 500 masks to Home Nursing Foundation, a nonprofit dedicated to bringing all-round care into the homes of patients.

Inspired to do your bit? Here’s how you can help:

Let’s continue supporting each other, knowing that each one of us can make a difference to build a #CityofGood.