While many of us are making plans for the holidays and purchasing gifts for one another, we’re also opening our wallets to charitable organizations whose missions we support. In fact, the final few months of each year are known as the “Giving Season” by the nonprofit community.

Why are Americans so much more likely to donate to charities in the fourth quarter of the year? According to the Winter 2011 issue of the Nonprofit Fundraising Survey, more than half of nonprofit organizations nationwide receive over a quarter of their contributed funding between October and December, and 16 percent of all organizations receive more than half of their annual contributions during that same time period. The timing of charitable contributions is likely a compound effect of the holiday spirit and the end of the taxable year. For taxpayers who itemize their deductions, charitable contributions must be made prior to January 1st.

The United States ranked second overall in 2015’s World Giving Index for charitable giving, and the state of Idaho ranked third overall according to a study on charitable giving published by WalletHub in December 2015. The same study found that Idaho had the fourth-highest volunteer rate and the second-highest growth in charitable giving from 2006 to 2012.

This says a lot about the state of Idaho. While Idahoans have many reasons why they donate their time and money, their charitable contributions help sustain organizations that provide valuable services to local and state-wide communities. We’re all a little better off when we support those around us.