Here is our Blumbergs Canadian Charity Sector Snapshot 2018.

We recently reviewed the T3010 Registered Charity Information Return database for 2018 as part of the Sean Blumberg Transparency Project.  The database covers about 84,323 of the 85,800 registered charities in Canada that had filed their T3010 and were processed into CRA’s Charity Listing database by May 2020.

This article provides a snapshot of the registered charity sector based on the 2018 T3010 filings.  We have completed Blumbergs’ Snapshots of the Canadian Charity Sector for 2010 – 2017 as well. Keep in mind that these statistics only relate to registered charities under the Income Tax Act (Canada) and not to the 80,000 -100,000 non-profits which are not registered charities and for which CRA is not permitted to release information.

In the 2014 Federal Budget, the previous Conservative government proposed reviewing the transparency requirements for non-profits and hopefully one day we will see greater transparency on the non-profit sector.  Here is my most recent submission to the Federal government calling for greater transparency with non-profits and charities.

The Canadian charity sector is a vital part of Canadian society and economy with revenue of over $284 billion and expenditures of about $271 billion.

Please review the caveats at the end about the reliability and usage of T3010 information.

The Sean Blumberg Transparency Project 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.


Some of the highlights of the Blumbergs’ Snapshot of the Canadian Charity Sector 2018 include:

  • 84,323 registered charities filed their T3010 in Canada out of approximately 85,800 charities
  • $284 billion in total revenue for Canadian charities and total expenditures of $271 billion.
  • Government revenue totaled $189.7 Billion including from the federal government ($8.3 Billion), provincial governments ($170.8 Billion) and municipal/regional governments ($10.6 Billion). In total government is approximately 67% of revenue of the whole charity sector.
  • 78,264 identified themselves as active and 4,382 as inactive
  • 31,532 made gifts to other charities or qualified donees during their 2018 fiscal year
  • Canadian charities spent over $3.75 billion outside of Canada
  • 148 Canadian charities received funds from CIDA/DFATD
  • 3,327 identified having contractual relationships with foreign intermediaries, 1,454 charities identified that employees conducted activities outside of Canada and 2,873 had volunteers conducting foreign activities.
  • $2.5 Billion was received by Canadian charities from outside of Canada
  • 722 identified carrying on political activities
  • $30 million was spent by Canadian charities on political activities
  • the most common method of political activity is staff using the website or social media. (see the schedule 7 with information on political activities)
  • 45,462 identified having employment expenses while 38,485 did not have any employment expenses
  • $155 Billion was spent by Canadian charities on salaries and other compensation expenditures
  • $18 Billion in official donation receipts were issued by Canadian registered charities

You can read the full Blumbergs Canadian Charity Sector Snapshot 2018.