Here is my December 2007 newsletter for those interested in charities and non-profits.

The December issue is a little early to highlight our new GlobalPhilanthropy.ca website as discussed below. 

1) New Canadian Global Philanthropy Website at Globalphilanthropy.ca

The Globalphilanthropy.ca website will try to assist and encourage Canadian charities and individuals to conduct charitable operations and programs outside of Canada.  Global philanthropy has always been a very cost-effective way of helping a large number of people.  With the strong Canadian dollar and a very strong interest in global affairs there will probably be even greater strides in assisting others beyond the borders of Canada. Globalphilanthropy.ca will provide articles on legal issues facing Canadian charities that operate abroad and philanthropists who are interested in work outside of Canada. 

2) Globe and Mail Article “Disaster-relief charities breaking the rules, probe finds” 

The Globe & Mail on November 19, 2007 wrote about Canada Revenue Agency audits of Canadian charities involved in disaster relief including the tsunami. The large number of charities that were non-compliant amongst the CRA sample is indicative of the scope of the problem and will not improve the public’s confidence in the international development and humanitarian assistance sector.

3) Does a Canadian charity need a Charity lawyer

With so much legal information available some may think that a Canadian charity does not need a charity lawyer or a lawyer who is knowledgeable about non-profit and charity law.  In this article I discuss some of the reasons that a charity should have a charity lawyer and also how to cost-effectively obtain appropriate legal services.

4) Global Philanthropy is growing, but it is still beaten by remittances and investment

In this article I discuss the importance of remittances by Canadian residents to foreign countries.  Canada is the third largest country in terms of remittances at $6.3 billion, after the US at $61B and the UK at $6.6B.  The impact of these flows of funds can be substantial and the charitable sector should consider encouraging those who remit to donate to charities instead so that the funds can have a broad public purpose and be efficiently spent on long term goals such as education. 

5) Good Governance for Canadian Non-profits and Charities

In a few pages I try to deal with the often confusing issue of “Good Governance” and try to in a practical way encourage charities to consider some simple steps to imprve governance.

6) RC4106 Legal Audits – Trying to bring Canadian charities that operate abroad into compliance

The Globe & Mail article I referred to above on Canadian disaster relief charities not complying with the rules provides one of many illustrations of the importance of Canadian charities understanding and complying with CRA guidelines on Canadian charities operating outside of Canada.  If you make it through this giving season with your fingers crossed and without any scrutiny then consider in the new year having a informal legal audit of your foreign activities.  It is the best gift you can give to your charitable loved one!

7) Is Kevin Donovan, Toronto Star reporter, a hero or villain

Kevin Donovan is a reporter for the Toronto Star.  He has written a number of stories over the last year about the charitable sector for the Toronto Star.  As we are in the busiest time of year for most charities, this article discusses whether his writings are good or bad for the sector.

Personal Notes:

December 1 and 2, 2007 I will be at the Canadian Crossroads International board meeting learning more about cross cultural exchanges, HIV/AIDS, women’s rights and community economic development.

If you require legal advice with respect to non-profits or charities please contact me at mark@blumbergs.ca or at 416-361-1982 x. 237

For further information on legal resources for Canadian Non-Profits and Charities please visit the Blumbergs Canadian Non-Profits and Charities page.

Hope that you found the above material helpful and please feel free to forward to anyone who you think may be interested.  They can also sign up to the BLUMBERGS non-profit and charities law newsletter, among other newsletters, at Blumbergs’ Newsletter Page

Mark Blumberg

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Mark Blumberg, B.A., LL.B., LL.M., TEP

Blumberg Segal LLP
Barristers & Solicitors
390 Bay Street, Suite 1202
Toronto, Ontario, M5H-2Y2

Tel.    (416) 361-1982 ext. 237
Fax.  (416) 363-8451
Email: mark@blumbergs.ca

URL:  http://www.blumbergs.ca/
URL:  http://www.globalphilanthropy.ca/

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