Unfortunately, it remains part of Canada's culture of philanthropy to think charities should spend all their money directly on programs and that "administrative" spending is wrong and should be discouraged. There's a double standard, with different expectations of businesses than of charities when it comes to investing internally.
Twenty-four per cent of our donations go to small charities that make up 80 per cent of the sector. I personally was not aware of the vital work they do until my family needed the services of one. They provided services that a larger charity -- which often focuses on bigger picture work -- couldn't provide.
Friday is World Food Day, the perfect day to join thousands of people around the world by treating yourself (and others), to the most expensive and lavish feast you can afford. You deserve it! And here's the best part: you can satisfy that craving -- and be a humanitarian hero at the same time, helping some of the most vulnerable people on the planet.
We value charities mostly based on how low the overhead is -- this is a deeply entrenched, if not consciously examined, measuring stick for charities. We want our support to go exclusively toward program delivery and not into staff, operations, technology, or training and development -- as if the two are completely unrelated.
With every action you take, you change the world, too -- for better or for worse -- whether or not you even realize it. Changing the world for the better, in my view, is an achievable goal for every single Canadian. And it's much like achieving any other goal in that all you need to do is start working on forming habits that contribute toward the change you want to see.
It's true that most governments in developing countries provide education for children. And there's no doubt that millions of children overseas are intelligent, hard-working and yearning to succeed. But let's consider the many challenges which children in the world's poorest regions face when trying to attend school.
No matter your age, you very likely made a donation you can claim on your tax return. This can be anything from sponsoring a friend's marathon, to attending a fundraising gala, to growing a moustache. Giving through the year is a great way to give back to your community, and there's certainly a little karma built into tax refunds, so make sure you follow these tips to get a little back come tax time.
Each year, 50 per cent of charitable giving through CanadaHelps happens in December, equating to $35 million in donations to worthy causes. December 31 is the most popular day of giving, with $3.6 million donated on this day alone. Some individuals have a charity which they donate to year after year; others vary their charitable giving among an array of organizations. So what do people need to consider before deciding which charity to share their goodwill with this year?
It's important to be mindful when you give. Next time you attend a function where people ask for a donation for charity don't reach for the minute rice or the wax beans that you know you're not going to eat -- reach for your favourite tin of soup, or a jug of real juice or some healthy pasta, and consider how much MORE receiving that kind of generosity will mean to someone who does need the help.
Why am I so uncomfortable with the word "charity"? Yet I use the word to symbolize a thought or feeling. I feel more charitable or less charitable today. Maybe it's because I feel the word demeans the intent. But, nonetheless this year I am producing my 9th Annual Andy Kim Christmas Show for "Charity."
Figures reported by Statistics Canada suggest that our citizens are among the world's most generous. Canadians have been donating approximately eight-billion dollars or more every year since 2007. As individuals get older, they may begin thinking in terms of the wealth that they have accumulated and what can safely be spared, identifying a charity believed to be worthy of sharing in their assets.
The last thing we needed was a roadblock. I feel exposed -- I am a white woman in the passenger seat of a car in Nicaragua. The people of Barrio Nuevo Amanecer, in Esteli, Nicaragua, are protesting against violence in their community. Their grief is fresh because last week, a 23-year-old mother of three was murdered. Forced into prostitution by her husband, her life was taken by a john.
The results of a recent study conducted by MoneySense on charity spending are shocking, to say the least. The difference in the ways that charities are being run is frightening. I counted 13 very well-known charities that spend less than 50 per cent of the money they raise on programs. Two were less than 40 per cent!
We've all heard the saying "It's like herding cats." As challenging as that might be, it's not much more difficult than building consensus with a global committee: everyone has a different view, and often a territorial approach to meetings. In fact, while herding cats is tough, creating a brand change in corporations may be even tougher.
Charities are a big business and this business is becoming more competitive and costly each year. There are over 85,000 organizations on the Canada Revenue Agency's Charities Directorate. They employ a lot of people to chase more than $8.3 billion dollars in donations as reported by Statistics Canada. When you make a donation with your hard earned money, you want it to go to the cause. It is understood that some of the donation will be used for administrative costs and fundraising but one hopes that a large percentage will reach the people you intend to help. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.
There's something families can do together to start 2013 on the right foot. It's a New Year's "tithe." The concept of tithing, the setting aside of one-tenth of our earnings for a purpose other than our own use, is thousands of years old. This January, instead of a list of resolutions that you may not keep, why not consider a New Year's legacy?