CBC News investigates charity donations and where they end up

Do you know where your charitable donations are actually going? On Wednesday, Sept. 22, senior investigative correspondent Diana Swain and CBC news teams across the country reveal just how much Canadian charities are spending on fundraisers-for-hire—and it’s more than you might think.

The burden is especially high for small charities, many of which have few resources to raise money on their own, so they often turn to professionals. But service comes at a cost. This special investigative report airs throughout the day on The National, CBC Television, CBC News Network, CBC Radio One and CBCNews.ca, and takes a hard look at how fees charged by the private fund-raising industry took three-quarters of a billion dollars out of Canadians’ charitable donations over five years.

Stories from across the country:

Across the country, CBC News teams present special reports as part of this investigation. In Montreal, the Fondation des Aveugles du Quebec (Quebec Foundation for the Blind) hired external fundraisers in 2009 and paid them a significant percentage of what they earned that year. In Vancouver, the fundraising giant Xentel raised $1.5 million dollars for the B.C. Wheelchair Sports Association between 2003 and 2009, and was paid $1.1 million, or 73 per cent. And in Saskatchewan, the Alzheimer Society of Saskatchewan hired an organization to help with its door-to-door canvassing campaign in 2008. When the campaign finished, the Society lost money on it—the first time ever.

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