Amid a challenging economic environment in 2015, this third Giving Report confirms South African HNW individuals’ continued commitment to giving back to society. The results across the three Giving Reports – spanning a five-year period – are remarkably consistent and show that the vast majority of HNW individuals give to social causes they care about over the long term without formalised structures or strategies.


Some form of giving is reported from nine out of ten respondents, although givers are shifting slightly away from cash and towards non-cash forms of giving and volunteering. Significantly, those who did give during 2015 gave more in value and time than was the case in 2012.

As seen in 2010 and 2012 the majority of givers are donating to causes that they care about and are looking to make a difference by giving back to the community. As such, they are less likely to make a donation to an organisation that does not align with their beliefs.

Givers have typically been giving for a long time and it is likely that they will continue to give. More than half the givers in 2015 have been giving for more than 10 years.

Personal networks and word of mouth are playing an increasingly important role in giving decisions as more people are looking to peers and fellow donors for guidance. Despite a general trend of increasing digitisation, online searches are seldom used to inform giving decisions among HNW individuals.

The vast majority of giving continues to be guided by personal choice, and is not formalised by way of giving budgets or strategies. While the existence of a budget is not a good predictor of higher levels of giving, those who give according to a strategy are generally more likely to give greater amounts.

Religion remains a significant motivation for giving among HNW individuals and, as in previous years, it appears to drive more frequent and greater amounts of giving. While religion does not influence givers to adopt a budget for their giving, religiously motivated givers are slightly more likely to have a giving strategy.

South Africa finds itself in a period of great societal need, and private giving plays a significant role in addressing this need. We are buoyed by the findings of this study and hope that the Giving Report will continue to fuel important conversations around philanthropy in the country and beyond.


The Giving Report III, 2016
Nedbank Private Wealth

Download the full report: The Giving Report III: A survey on the giving practices of high-net-worth individuals in South Africa

About Trialogue

Trialogue is one of only a few consultancies in South Africa that focus exclusively on corporate responsibility issues. Over 17 years of experience puts us at the forefront of new developments in sustainability and corporate social investment (CSI).

We are a 51% black-owned company and the southern African Local Authority of the CECP Global Exchange.