Random Thoughts on Philanthropy in Canada

Let’s stop comparing ourselves to Americans when it comes to charitable giving. It is true that on a per capita basis, Americans are more far generous than we are but the truth is that they are miles ahead of every nationality when it comes to...

CORPORATE GIVING: How Corporations Decide To Allocate Social Investments

My first article on corporate community investment attempted to dispel some of the basic tenets of corporate philanthropy – namely, that the notion of “corporate philanthropy” is a misguided one because all corporate giving must be driven by building shareholder value and that the values...

CORPORATE GIVING: Whatever You Call It, It’s Not Philanthropic

There are many myths and erroneous assumptions about how corporations manage their community investments. The first myth (and probably the most important one to dispel) is the notion of corporate philanthropy – that corporations are philanthropic entities that share human goals and ideals. The faster...

Canada’s Charities Deserve Better

It’s time to have a frank discussion about charities and their administrative and fundraising costs. Over the past decade, the increasing focus on a charity’s cost of doing business – and yes, charities are in the business of societal betterment – has forced the entire...

Endowments: How To

In the last few months, readers of this publication have had the opportunity to seriously consider the notion of endowments and how they might fit into our overall donor development model. Both Liz Moxham and I tackled how the recent changes to the Disbursement Quota...

Are Endowments a Lost Soul?

The endowment is a bit of lost soul. It’s a term with no true legal meaning but a whole bunch of different understandings. It’s a word embraced by some fundraising organizations yet frowned upon by others. Endowments are like perennial flowers – we don’t want...

The Disbursement Quota Rules and their Implications for Charities

Tucked away in 2010 Federal Budget were several proposed provisions which will radically impact the way that charities manage their donations. These provisions, which reform and substantially simplify the existing disbursement quota rules, should dramatically impact the conversations that gift planners (and all fundraisers) have...

Impact of Donor Advised Funds on Canadian Philanthropy

The recent influx of commercial donor-advised funds (aka “charitable giving funds”) into the charitable marketplace has raised the eyebrow of many fundraising professionals employed by the thousands of charities currently operating in Canada. How will this impact my bottom line? Will these new charitable programs...

Gift Giving In Today’s Tumultuous Times

It’s 9:00 am on Wednesday, November 26 and my inbox is already flooded with emails. Everyone, including our very own Chief Investment Officer, has taken the time to let me know that the BCE Deal has imploded and it’s probably not going to close.   While...