There are approximately 161,000 formally registered or incorporated nonprofit organizations in Canada, of which about 80,000 are charities. Collectively, they report annual revenues of $112 billion and employ over two million people. When hospitals, universities and colleges are excluded, the sector has $75 billion in revenues and 1.3 million employees.
The 1% of organizations reporting annual revenues of $10 million or more, account for 59% of total revenues in the sector. The 42% of organizations with annual revenues less than $30,000 collectively account for just 1% of total revenues. Fewer than half (49%) of Canada’s nonprofit and voluntary organizations have staff.
About 12.5 million Canadians (46% of the population aged 15+) volunteer their time to charities and nonprofit organizations. Volunteers contribute more than two billion hours each year – the equivalent of one million full time jobs! However, an estimated 84% of the population helps others directly, without going through an organization.
Canadian volunteers contributed an average of 166 hours each in 2007. Canadians volunteer most often with sports and recreation, social services, education and research, and religious organizations. Volunteer rates were highest among youth, those with university degrees, those with household incomes over $100,000, and those who attended religious services weekly.
The top three reasons for volunteering were: to make a contribution to the community, to use one’s skills and experiences, and being affected by the cause supported by the organization.
Almost 23 million Canadians (84% of the population aged 15+) made a financial donation in 2007, for a total of nearly $10 billion and an average annual donation of $437. The average varies from a high of $596 in Alberta, to a low of $219 in Quebec. Canadians gave the most money to religious organizations (46% of all donations), followed by health (15%) and social service (9%) groups. An estimated 85% of the population made in-kind donations.
Donors with household incomes less than $20,000 gave a greater percentage of their income than others. The donor rate varies form a high of 91% in Newfoundland and Labrador to a low of 66% in Nunavut.