Giving by Canadians
Are fewer Canadians giving to charity?
For the charitable sector today, there is possibly no more important question. But unfortunately, there is also no clear and definitive answer.
On the one hand, we have data from the Canada Revenue Agency that demonstrates a slow but steady decline in the percentage of tax filers who have receipted donations with the most recent data showing this trend continuing. While Canadians reported $9.1 Billion in tax receipted donations in 2015 (the highest ever), this record amount came from 21% of tax filers (the lowest in the past 25 years) and from 48,750 fewer donorsthan in 2014. There are also the results of the General Social Survey (formerly Canadian Survey of Giving, Volunteering and Participating) that show self-reported giving behaviour among Canadians aged 15 and over has dropped from 85% in 2004 to 82% in 2013.
On the other hand, T3010 filings tell us that the charitable sector as a whole is reporting greater fundraising results year after year. And we also know that Canadians continue to step up in droves when there is a need, as most recently evidenced by the $165 million that was donated to the Canadian Red Cross to support Fort McMurray in the wake of the devastating fire that hit that community last year.