Alberta has taken a big economic hit, but leads the provinces in charitable donations.
Despite high unemployment and a sluggish economy in 2019, Albertans are making generous donations, based on claims made on the latest available tax returns.
The latest data from Statistics Canada, as reported by the Alberta Treasury Branch, shows the median charitable donation claimed by Alberta tax filers in 2019 was $500.
According to a release from ATB, this is higher than the nine other provinces, but if territories are included, then Nunavut would top the list at $630.
The median donation in Canada as a whole was $310. Donors in Quebec reported the lowest median donation at $130.
Alberta tax filers claimed a total of $1.6 billion in charitable donations in 2019 — up 0.5 per cent from 2018. The Canadian total was $10.3 billion.
Despite a growing number of tax filers, the number of donors has decreased for five years in a row while total donations have been rising.
In other words, fewer donors are contributing more. This trend is occurring across Canada.
At the same time, the number of Canadians (provincial data was not reported) making large donations increased while the number making small donations decreased.
The average amount donated tends to rise with the donor’s age. The average donation among Albertans under age 25 was $910 in 2019, compared to $4,330 for those age 65 and over.
Not surprisingly, income is also a key factor. Canadians with incomes over $80,000 are more likely to report making donations compared to those earning a lower income.