Canadians donating 8 percent more to charity

Canadians are currently donating an average of $624 to charity, which is 8% more than in 2013, says a BMO Charitable Giving Poll released on Sunday. Eighty-four percent of Canadian citizens claim they have made a charitable donation, compared to 77% last year.

The poll was carried out by Pollara and was released on National Philanthropy Day in Canada.

The percentage of Canadians expecting to give to charity over the next twelve months stands at 90%, and they aim to give (average) $720.

The most popular causes are animal welfare (22%), anti-poverty (39%) and health (66%).

Although education (16%) and environmental causes (11) are lower down, they saw the biggest increase in donations this year, up 4 and 3 percentage points respectively.

Nick Mastromarco, Managing Director, Loyalty and Partnerships, BMO Bank of Montreal, said:

“Year after year, Canadians have shown that supporting charities and causes across the country is a priority for them, and their generosity is showing no signs of slowing down.”

Canadian Charitable Donations

It appears the Albertans are the most generous donors. (Source: BMO Financial Group)

Dr. Jacline Nyman, President & CEO of United Way Centraide Canada, said:

“We know Canadians are extremely generous. In fact, last year, Canadians invested over half a billion dollars through United Ways Centraides to make real and lasting change in their communities.”

“These monies were invested in fighting poverty, supporting kids and building up healthy communities across this country. All Canadians want to invest their monies wisely and we are thrilled to see charitable investments growing in Canada.”

The most popular way to donate is cash at specific locations (46%), followed by buying products to be donated (40%), donations added to point of sale transactions (29%), and donating online with a credit card (24%).

Canadians need to make sure they can track what they give, Mr. Mastromarco emphasized, both from a financial planning and tax efficiency perspective.

Mr. Mastromarco said:

“Using secure payment methods and tools and working with a financial planner to build charitable giving into your overall household budget can help ensure you maximize the amount you’re able to give and take advantage of the tax benefits associated with your donations.”