Rethinking School-Based Community Service: The Importance of a Structured Program

Introduction In September 1999, the Ontario government instituted a new set of curriculum requirements for the Ontario Secondary School diploma, including a controversial 40-hour mandatory community service requirement. The benefits and drawbacks of school-based community service programs have been widely discussed in both educational and voluntary sector literature. While our research into previously existing community…

Strategies for Boosting Volunteerism in Canada

Introduction In February 2005, an eclectic group of individuals was brought together for an event called Volunteer Zone Bénévoles to tackle a significant challenge—to unite their thoughts, passions, experiences, and energies in the creation of an action plan to move volunteerism in Canada into the future. It was an ambitious task. The three-day think-tank involved…

New CRA Policy on Umbrella Organizations

Introduction This article provides a brief overview of the draft policy entitled Guidelines for the Registration of Umbrella Organizations (“Guidelines”) that was released by Canada Revenue Agency (“CRA”) on July 29, 2005. The Guidelines discuss the eligibility of umbrella organizations for charitable registration and are available on CRA’s Web site at <http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/tax/charities/ consultations/umbrella-e.html>. What is…

Insurance Issues for Charities

Introduction and Overview Insurance may be “essential” for charities but it is not always available or affordable. Further, charities may not always understand what their real risks are and how those risks can be managed and mitigated through a combination of risk transfer mechanisms such as insurance, indemnities, adherence to best practices, and seeking appropriate…

A Comparison of the Three Categories of Registered Charities

Introduction This article provides an overview of the differences between charitable organizations, public foundations, and private foundations and their requirements under the Income Tax Act (Canada) (the “Act”).1 As a result of recent proposed amendments concerning the definitions of charitable organizations and public foundations, as well as the recently amended disbursement quota rules that apply…

Bookshelf

Effective Economic Decision-Making by Nonprofit Organizations Dennis R. Young, Editor Published by the National Center on Nonprofit Enterprise and The Foundation Center, 2004, 228 pp. US $34.95 REVIEWED BY SCOTT HALDANE President & CEO, YMCA of Greater Toronto Many voluntary sector organizations including charities and not-for-profit organizations and their leaders have been admonished by private…