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What did I learn today - Canadians and Charity

Kofi Annan, Secretary-General of the United Nations states “Knowledge is power.  Information is liberating.  Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family”.  I believe this statement should be our guide in everything we do.  We have opportunities to learn something new everyday.   Learning can be through formal education, classes at our local community centre, reading a newspaper or interacting with others.  Learning and education are lifelong activities and I have decided to try to learn something new everyday.  When my children were in elementary school I would ask them at dinner, “What did you learn today?”  Now I ask myself, “What did I learn today?”

So, what did I learn today?   I learned that Canadians give less to charities than Americans.  I am taking an online course through Ryerson University,  studying fundraising and philanthropy.  A 2010 report from the Fraser Institute looked at 2008 tax returns from Canada and the United States and found that Americans gave 1.38% of their income to charity and Canadians gave 0.73%.    This ultimately affects the ability of charities, including AEBC, to deliver prgrams and services to Canadians.   The Fraser Institute report can be found at the link:

http://www.fraserinstitute.org/uploadedFiles/fraser-ca/Content/research-news/research/publications/generosity-index-2010.pdf

 

Disclaimer:

This blog is curated by the AEBC, but welcomes contributions from members and non-members alike. The thoughts, views, and opinions expressed in the Blind Canadians Blog are those of the contributing authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the AEBC, its members, or any of its donors and partners.

Comments

Here in Quebec, we are probably the highest taxed. Some of Quebec's tax payers do not have any information as to where most of their tax dollars are going, as a result they do not have an incentive to donate. Some Charities here received less fundings for Charities, I believe in this case because of higher taxes. It is important for charities to inform the public in general of what kind of support they receive from the Government so the public in general will have a knowledge of their real needs, and the public can donate accordingly.

Richard:

You are absolutely correct. Canadians are taxed at a higher rate, and we expect that our taxes will be used to provide social services.

Americans value equal opportunity and believe that all citizens should have an opportunity to achieve, but that only through hard work will one actually achieve their goals.. Canadians value equal results and expect that our taxes will provide equal opportunity to health care, education and social services.

The fact Canadians donate less to charity may be true. But one thing the Fraser Institute fails to mention is how much more community based social services in Canada may directly funded by government than the United States. Well at least there is this perception in Canada. Currently we are at a cross road here where our current federal and many provincial governments are continiously reducing the amount of mony they put into the charity sector. Therefore, until a charity like AEBC can find a way to replace revnue from the government, said charities will have to find ways to develop unique products and services the public will want to support and donate to.