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Charitable giving in Alberta Part I

Charitable giving in Alberta Part I

Posted on: 2/11/2019 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

​​When it comes to pitching in and getting things done, Albertans are known for their tireless volunteerism. Our willingness to pitch in with cash is also something that sets us apart.

New numbers from 2017 show that Albertans give more per person than others in Canada. In that year, total giving to charities was just under $1.57 billion. The median gift per donor in Alberta was $480, the highest among all the provinces. The Canadian average was $300.

Over time, Albertans continue to dig deep and give more. The chart below shows total charitable giving over the last 20 years. Since 1997, total giving in our province is up over 200 per cent (although population growth, inflation and rising incomes in Alberta account for most of this).

Charitable donations in Calgary lead the province, up from $186 million in 1997 to $664 million in 2017—a three-fold increase. The impact of the 2009 and 2016 recessions are evident with sizable dips in total charitable giving.

Edmonton lags behind but this is likely a reflection of the population growth of the city of Calgary, versus the city of Edmonton—the capital region has seen more of its population growth in the outlying areas. Outside of the two major cities, charitable giving is up 207 per cent.

Tomorrow, The Owl will take a deep dive at median charitable giving by city and town in Alberta.

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