The Canadian charity and non-profit sector are an important part of the Canadian economy and have a huge impact on the lives of Canadians. With the registered charity sector (approximately 86,000 organizations) the public has up-to-date and detailed information. Unfortunately, with the 80-100,000 non-profits that are not registered charities (we don't even know how many there are) we have almost no information on the size and scope of that sector and there is little transparency on individual non-profits that are not registered charities.
Some statistics on Canadian registered charities from the Blumbergs’ Snapshot of the Canadian Charity Sector 2015 include:
If the GDP of Canada was approximately 1.8 Trillion and expenditures of the registered charity sector alone is about 13.3% of that amount. The 13.3% figure does not even include the value of volunteer time!
The Canadian registered charity sector alone (not even including non-profits that are not charities) is bigger than the following industries (as a percentage of GDP):
Real estate and rental and leasing (13.04%), Manufacturing (10.36%), Mining, quarrying and oil or gas extraction (8.14%), Finance and insurance (7.1%), Public administration (6.33%), Wholesale trade (5.66%), Retail trade (5.41%), Transportation and warehousing (4.44%), Utilities (2.27%), Accommodation and food services (2.17%) and Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting (1.65%)
For the most up-to-date information see our directory on Canadian charity statistics.
We have long pushed for greater transparency in the non-profit and charitable sector and you can see our submissions on transparency in this directory.
Blumbergs has created the largest Canadian registered charity information portal at CharityData.ca with up to 14 years information on every Canadian registered charity.
CharityData.ca provides an easy to use interface that is far easier to use than the CRA's Charities Listing to analyse T3010 Registered Charity Information Return data on a particular charity. It also allows the user to sort charities under "Advanced Charity Search" by over 30 criteria.
While it is easy to see what gifts a charity gives to other charities on the CRA website but what if you want to know which charities gave funds to a particular charity? Now you can do this on CharityData.ca by looking under the "Fundraising" tab.
The Director Search function of CharityData.ca also allows users to search over 600,000 directors by their first and last names and it is the only publicly available and up-to-date tool for searching them.
The portal is free and its aim is to increase transparency in the Canadian charity sector.
You can use CharityData.ca to search or sort by the following:
Search by Name of Charity, BN, Program, Charity Type, Revenue, Province and City.
You can also sort by over 25 different parametres listed below.
– Legal name
– Total assets (4200)
– Total liabilities (4350)
– Total revenue (4700)
– Total expenditures (5100)
– Receipted donations (4500)
– Total amount received from other charities (4510)
– Total amount of tax-receipted gifts-in-kind (580)
– Revenue from sale of goods and services (4640)
– Total revenue received from federal government (4540)
– Total revenue received from provincial / territorial governments (4550)
– Total revenue received from municipal / regional governments (4560)
– Total tax-receipted revenue from outside Canada (4571)
– Total non tax-receipted revenue from outside Canada (4575)
– Total Advertising and promotion (4800)
– Occupancy costs (4850)
– Professional and consulting fees (4860)
– Total expenditures on charitable activities (5000)
– Total expenditures on management and administration (5010)
– Total expenditures on fundraising (5020)
– Total expenditures on political activities, inside or outside Canada (5030)
– Total other expenditures (5040)
– Total amounts paid to external fundraisers (5460)
– Total compensation expenditures (390)
– Total Expenditures Outside of Canada / Foreign Activities (200)
For the most up-to-date information on a particular charity, including whether a charity is still registered you should use the CRA Charities Listing at http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/ebci/haip/srch/advancedsearch-eng.action However, for analyzing the past data of charities CharityData.ca is much easier to use.
CharityData.ca is part of the Sean Blumberg Transparency Project which is in memory of my youngest brother Sean Blumberg. Sean was a sweet, kind person, a great brother who helped me on a number of occasions with many tasks including the time consuming and arduous task of reviewing T3010 databases and making them into something useful. As part of the Sean Blumberg Transparency Project, Blumbergs has been releasing information on the Canadian charity sector to provide a better understanding of the size, scope, complexity and challenges of the sector.
Do you require legal advice with respect to Canadian or Ontario non-profits or charities?
Mark Blumberg is a partner at the law firm of Blumberg Segal LLP in Toronto and works almost exclusively in the areas of non-profit and charity law.