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Headlines
July 3, 2009

1. Guidance for Registered Charities with Overseas Operations


The update to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) policy on charities with overseas operations is now available. A consultation on the “Proposed Guidance on Activities Outside Canada for Canadian Registered Charities” will take place until September 30. Over the past few decades, international development policy and practice have evolved towards emphasizing the strengthening of local capacity to drive sustainable economic and social development.  This evolving reality of development may seem to contradict the requirement for Canadian charities to have “direction and control” of international development activities. However, demonstration of direction and control is, in large part, the focus of the proposed new guidelines for registered charities that have activities outside Canada. The challenge for Canadian charities working overseas is to meet the requirements of compliance with the Income Tax Act while supporting and encouraging Southern-driven, locally-owned models of development. Because of the importance of this issue, CCIC will compile comments from the membership and prepare a collective response to these new guidelines. Send CCIC comments, questions and concerns by September 15.


2. Canada Revenue Agency Guidance on Fundraising by Canadian charities


The Canada Revenue Agency recently released its “Guidance on Fundraising”document. It provides information for registered charities on the current treatment of fundraising under the Income Tax Act and under common law. This guidance offers direction on issues such as the following: distinguishing between fundraising and other expenditures; allocating expenditures for the purposes of reporting them on Form T3010, Registered Charity Information Return; dealing with activities that have more than one purpose; and understanding how the CRA assesses what is acceptable fundraising activity, what may preclude registration, or what may result in a sanction, penalty, or revocation.

3. Giving, Volunteering and Participating


Findings from the 2007 “Canada Survey of Giving, Volunteering and Participating”, released in June, show that although rates of donating, volunteering and helping are largely unchanged from the 2004 survey, there has been modest growth in the total value of donations, the average size of donations and total volunteer hours. In 2007, Canadians donated a total of $10 billion, an increase of 12% or $1.1 billion from 2004, and volunteered 2.1 billion hours, a 4.2% increase. The average donation increased to $437 from $400 in 2004 while the average number of volunteer hours remained about the same at 166 hours. The survey is conducted by Statistics Canada every three years.

4. Peru Massacres


CCIC’s Americas Policy Group (APG) joined scores of human rights and Indigenous peoples groups from around the world in condemning the massacre of between 30 and 100 Indigenous peoples in Peru. The Indigenous people were peacefully protesting the privatization of large tracts of the Amazon for oil, mining and agribusiness. Twenty-four police officers were also killed and over 150 indigenous people were injured. The crisis was sparked when Peru’s President introduced unconstitutional decrees to fast track free trade and private investment in the Amazon. In a letter to Prime Minister Stephen Harper the APG noted that these killing should be of grave concern for the Canadian government, whose own Free Trade Agreement with Peru is now before the Senate. The APG has urged the Senate to undertake hearings on the human rights situation in Peru.

5. CCIC’s New Home


CCIC has moved. We’re now the owners of the 2nd Floor of 450 Rideau St. in Ottawa. Phone and fax numbers have not changed.

 

Worth Looking At

 

6. A Participatory Evaluation Guide for Civil Society Organizations

 

A new CCIC publication, Toward Good Practice in Public Engagement: A participatory evaluation guide for CSOs, was launched at the at CCIC’s Public Engagement Forum in May. Toward Good Practice presents the findings from last year’s Public Engagement Practices (PEP) project. PEP, a year-long joint initiative of CCIC, the Atlantic Council for International Cooperation, the Canadian Nurses Association, Jamaican Self-Help and the Fair Trade Manitoba initiative of the Manitoba Council for International Cooperation, was designed to help participating organizations prove and improve their practices  in public engagement through the use of participatory evaluation methodologies. The guidebook explores how to test for organizational readiness for conducting participatory evaluations; outlines a framework for evaluation; and documents the experiences of the four PEP organizations and what these experiences tell us about good practice in public engagement. The publication is free to download. For more information, contact Michael Stephens by email or call 613-241-7007ext. 332.

7. e-Au Courant


Read the latest issues of CCIC's electronic publication e-Au Courant. In this issue: Economic and Financial Crisis. The Casino Economy by Gerry Barr; One World. Two Tracks. Multiple Crises by Fraser Reilly-King; Pirate Bankers and the Shadow Economy by Peter Gillespie; Economic Meltdown: This Crisis Has a Woman's Face by Amelita King Dejardin; Poverty, Human Rights and the Global Economic Crisis: What Should Civil Society Be Doing? by Susan George.


Reminder: Flash is on its summer schedule. The deadline for submissions for the next Flash is July 24. The Flash will go out on July 31.

Flash is a members only publication. CCIC members, however, are encouraged to forward Flash to their staff, board, regional offices, Southern partners and volunteers. If you have an item for Flash, send it by e-mail to Katia Gianneschi. Please note that Flash items should be no longer than one paragraph.

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