Charitable donations are up, even as tax receipts continue to decline: Statistics Canada

Newly released statistics show the COVID-19 pandemic didn’t stop Canadians from making charitable contributions

Why It Matters

Fewer Canadians are claiming charitable tax credits. Finding out why could help charities better understand donors.

Charitable donations in Canada rose by 11.5 per cent in 2021, even as the number of Canadians claiming charitable tax credits continued to decline, according to recently released Statistics Canada data.

Tax filings from that year reveal charitable organizations received more than $11.8 billion, up from $10.6 billion in 2020. The median donation made by Canadians also increased by 5.9 per cent to $360.

However, fewer than 5 million people claimed a charitable tax credit in 2021, a decrease of 3.2 per cent — something the government agency said may be linked to “the increased use of crowdsourcing platforms and other methods of funding that do not provide donation receipts.”

But some in the charity sector question the possibility of a link between decreased tax receipts and crowdfunding platforms, with at least one expert noting Canadians have always donated t

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