Canadians’ Online Generosity Shines in Times of Crisis, But Continued Decline of Charitable Giving Puts Charities at Risk
TORONTO, March 25, 2020 – CanadaHelps, the country’s largest platform for donating and fundraising online, released the third edition of The Giving Report today, providing an in-depth look at the state of Canada’s charitable sector.
As the world grapples with COVID-19 and an anticipated economic downturn crisis, Canadians are stepping up to give through CanadaHelps’ online portal.
“The generosity we are seeing right now is incredibly inspiring. We are facing a global health and steep economic crisis,” says Marina Glogovac, President & CEO of CanadaHelps. “As we know from past crises and disasters, charities are at the heart of emergency and post-emergency efforts in Canada and elsewhere. Sustaining this generosity in the long-term, and also ensuring all charities are supported will be essential. But make no mistake, this economic crisis, combined with the multi-year decline in giving that we’ve seen in The Giving Report, threatens to significantly diminish the charitable sector.”
Since the World Health Organization declared a pandemic on March 11, 2020, CanadaHelps has seen a 54% increase in new monthly gifts, and a 65% increase in the number of donors supporting Canadian charities over the same period last year. This current spike in giving will be critical as charities respond to the immediate crisis, providing critical healthcare, and access to food, hygiene and support services – especially for vulnerable populations.
This increase in giving during times of crisis is just one of the trends found in The Giving Report 2020, but the data shows this level of giving is often not sustained. “As this crisis continues, charities across the country will see increased demand for their services and it won’t be isolated to health-related work,” says Glogovac, “but many traditional revenue sources such as events and ticket sales will evaporate due to social distancing and will likely never be the same, and the initial wave of donations will likely wane. All levels of government will also need to step up to ensure the charitable sector survives this crisis.”
With their volume of exclusive and aggregated data, CanadaHelps has a unique vantage point of the charitable sector at large. In their new Online Giving Index, which measures 36 months of data, they’ve found many trends and insights regarding online giving across Canada, including:
- Online giving is growing at nearly three times the rate of overall giving.
- International issues, especially disaster relief, are growing faster than online donations to other charitable categories.
- Donations made online to charities that work with Indigenous peoples are also increasing, although these donations still only make up 1% of total donations through CanadaHelps.
- After three years of slower growth in online donations to the environmental sector, this trend finally reversed in 2019—though only 5% of online donations go towards environmental initiatives.
- GivingTuesday, co-founded by CanadaHelps, resulted in Canadians making over 36,000 donations to support charities, raising $5 million. An increase of 50% from last year.
“Though we have seen a multi-year trend showing a flatlining in overall donations,” says Glogovac, “the response from the public during COVID-19 gives us hope that things will improve as more of us see and realize just how essential charities are to all of us.”
CanadaHelps builds effective and affordable fundraising technology, and provides free training and education so that all charities, regardless of size, have the capacity to increase their impact and succeed in the digital age. For Canadians, CanadaHelps.org, provides a convenient, safe and trusted one stop destination for donating to, fundraising for, or learning about any charity in Canada. Founded in 2000 and itself a charity, CanadaHelps has raised over $1B for charities from more than 2 million donors.
For further information: or to interview Marina Glogovac please contact: Wendy Bairos, Group Head, PR, Diamond Marketing Group, 416.831.9820, [email protected]