Nearly All Affluent Canadians Give to Charity

By Andrew Rickard | November 07 2014 02:05PM

According to a recent survey conducted by BMO Harris Private Banking, 91% of Canadians with investible assets of at least $1 million say they have given money to charity within the last twelve months. The average donation size was $5,217.

Asked about the various motivations behind their decision to donate, 55% said that they wish to have an effect on their communities, 50% said they wanted to give back to their communities, 31% were passionate about a cause, 23% felt an obligation to share their wealth with others, and 21% wished to reduce their taxes.

"For most of Canada's affluent, donating isn't about the tax incentives and bottom line, it's about doing the right thing for the right reasons and supporting their communities," comments Marvi Ricker, vice president and managing director of philanthropic services at BMO Harris Private Banking. "Philanthropy for them is really about sharing a portion of their good fortune with those who are in need."

The report revealed that wealthy Canadians also have some hesitations about charitable giving, with 43% of survey respondents saying they were worried their gift might not be used wisely by the receiving organization, and 26% concerned that their gifts would result in them being asked for even more donations in the future.