The joys of philanthropy become obvious almost the minute you begin giving. That’s especially true when you work closely with the charity or community cause you support through a donor advised fund, called a “Foundation account” at Canada Gives. Being able to experience and enjoy the impact of that invaluable work delivers an almost unquantifiable sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. But when an individual makes a donation directly to a charity, or through a private foundation, it often comes with unexpected attention from other charitable organizations—much of it unsolicited. Indeed, managing solicitations from charities can be a challenge.
That’s just another one of the many advantages of a Canada Gives Foundation account. As we’ve explained in previous blogs, our turnkey process allows clients to focus on giving, not administration.
Giving can be done discreetly
Once you open your account, the only job left is to fund it and select your preferred charity recipients. We handle the rest, from tax receipting to managing tax reports to the Canada Revenue Agency—and everything in between. We hold all financial information and will not disclose it to the public. In contrast, private foundations are required to disclose all grant and financial information and publish it to CRA’s Charities Directorate.
This requirement exposes that information to the entire not-for-profit sector, which is understandably very active (and sometimes quite persistent) in its pursuit of new funding sources. Many private and public foundations are listed in directories, and their financial activity and holdings are available to everyone who purchases a directory or looks up the foundation on the CRA website. This can lead to a flood of solicitation inquiries that can become not only burdensome, but also bothersome. Active philanthropists do not want to spend their time fielding calls or emails from various charitable organizations that do not fit with their funding interests.
Our Foundation clients, on the other hand, decide whether they wish to be identified to the charity that receives their gift, or remain anonymous with each gift; and if they wish to be listed in a foundation directory with a clearly defined Giving Profile, Canada Gives will vet the applications and forward the ones that meet their criteria.
Committed to helping you achieve your giving goals
As part of our onboarding process when we help to develop your Giving Profile, we’ll work to understand your passions, philanthropic interests and long-term strategic objectives. We’ll explore options on your behalf and present only those that fit into your vision for creating a lasting legacy.
Sometimes those uninvited solicitations will highlight new charitable programs and organizations that might otherwise go unnoticed. After all, new charities are springing up across Canada virtually every day. But it’s up to us to filter those requests and ensure we present the ones that may appeal to your philanthropic sensibilities.
Philanthropy can be a gift to share with family
Another key advantage of a Foundation account: increased accountability and transparency on your charitable money. Our donors receive a Quarterly Foundation report from our team and can take it back to their family members to decide which charities they plan to support. Many have turned this into an opportunity to spend more time with loved ones and make philanthropy a family affair, often once or twice a year. Others might be willing to assess new requests on a monthly basis. The options are highly flexible.
While preferences vary, what’s important is that a Canada Gives Foundation account provides the necessary privacy and control you need to make the experience of philanthropy as turnkey, engaging and fulfilling as possible. Your time should be spent growing your business, enjoying retirement or spending time with friends and family. Taking unwanted phone calls or responding to unsolicited emails shouldn’t be on that to-do list.
Denise Castonguay, Executive Director and CEO