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Imagine Canada

Strong Charities. Strong Communities.
It’s time to Stretch!

Invite your Member of Parliament to help Canadians give more throughout their lifetime to shape their communities! Tell them it’s time to Stretch!

Every day, charities make life better and the demand for their services is growing rapidly. Canadians overwhelmingly believe charities are important and are looking more and more to charities to make communities great places to live, work, learn, and play. To meet Canadians’ growing expectations, charities need to be properly financed. 

Donations, however, which play an important part in the equation, have stagnated. More than half of donors say they would increase their giving if there were better tax incentives. So let’s reverse the donation trend by providing Canadians an extra incentive to stretch their giving. 

Together we can strengthen communities and encourage a culture of lifelong giving. It’s time for the Stretch Tax Credit!

The timing has never been better! Decision-makers are listening and a likely budget surplus means a significant opportunity for the federal government to invest in our communities. The more that MPs hear from charities about how the Stretch will make a direct impact in their constituencies, the greater our chances of success.

Act now! Tell your Member of Parliament to support your community by endorsing the Stretch in the 2015 Federal Budget. A little “stretch” can go a long way to help charities meet the changing needs and growing demands of the individuals, families, and communities they serve.   

What is the Stretch?

The Stretch is a uniquely Canadian giving incentive developed by the charitable sector to help Canadians increase their giving over time. It’s about encouraging people to think more strategically about their giving, to build giving into their financial planning, and to make giving a lifelong habit. The result is more Canadians investing in the causes that are important to them. 

How does the Stretch Work?

It’s simple. The Stretch significantly increases the federal charitable tax credit for donations that exceed an individual’s previous highest level of giving.


Contact Your Member of Parliament

Our goal is for as many MPs as possible to hear from at least one charity in their constituency about the Stretch and what it would mean for their community. These handy tips will help you articulate how important the Stretch is to your organization.

Speak with your MP

MPs are generally very open to meeting with constituents and community leaders. A conversation gives you the chance to talk not only about the Stretch and the charitable sector, but about other issues that are important to your organization.  
Download our handy guide to help you prepare to meet with your MP (PDF)

Write a letter to your MP

Sending a letter is the easiest and quickest way to contact your MP. Consider using traditional mail in addition to email, the extra effort adds a personal touch and tells your MP how important this issue is for your organization. Remember, letters can be sent postage-free to MPs.
We’ve created a model letter that you can adapt and send to your MP. For added impact, describe what your organization can do in your community with the increased donations resulting from the Stretch.
Download our tips for writing to a Member of Parliament (PDF)
Download a model letter (Word document) 

Get on the map!

The map above shows which MPs have been contacted. Let us know if you’ve contacted your MP so that we can recognize your efforts. Please note: we review each submission individually, so it may take some time for your entry to go live.

Please note that we review each submission individually, so it may take some time for your entry to go live. We’ll also share and celebrate your submission on social media and in other materials. Thank you!

Spread the Word

There are more than 85,000 charities in Canada that can benefit from the Stretch. Together, we can ensure that MPs across Canada have connected with at least one charity in their constituency.

  • Ask three other charities to contact their MP
  • Share this website with other charity leaders
  • Tell your board and volunteers about the Stretch
  • Tell us how the Stretch can help your organization go further, use the hashtag #StretchCredit

Learn More

Want to learn more about the Stretch? We’ve created a number of resources to help you.

Political Activity

Contacting your MP is charitable activity. It does not qualify as political activity. It becomes political activity only if you use it in a public call to political action by asking others to urge a government to retain, oppose, or change a law, policy, or decision. Publicizing that you’ve had a meeting (through a tweet for example), or releasing the text of the letter, generally isn’t political activity unless you’re asking others to act on the information. 

Even where there is political activity, it is completely legal and legitimate provided ALL of your political activity for the year doesn’t use up more than 10% of your resources, and remains non-partisan. Just remember to report the activity on your T3010. 

Because this campaign hub contains a call to action (i.e. we encourage you to contact your MP), it counts towards Imagine Canada’s political activity and we will report on it to CRA through the T3010. Learn more.

Stay Connected

You can receive important updates directly to your inbox if your organization is a member of Imagine Canada. Let us know if you’d like to begin receiving updates! 

Not a member? Consider joining today! Your support enables us to carry out our vision of a strong and vibrant charitable and nonprofit sector.

Still have questions? Get in touch with Brittany Fritsch at publicpolicy@imaginecanada.ca.

Do you want to track the progress?