publication date: Jan 6, 2012
author/source: Kathryn McKechnie
There's no doubt that Canada's population is becoming more
diverse each year. As fundraisers, we face both a challenge and an opportunity:
understanding how immigration is changing our own community, and leveraging the
potential for financial support within diverse communities.
That's led KCI
senior consultant Nicole Nakoneshny
and Environics Analytics
VP Doug Norris
, to take an in-depth look
at immigrant philanthropy. They shared their conclusions at November's 2011 Congress
of the Association of Fundraising Professionals
Greater Toronto Chapter
Facts speak for
Diversity can be measured in several ways, they pointed out,
including ethnic origin, religion, language, place of birth, tenure in Canada,
and generational status (i.e. whether first or second-generation
Population growth in Canada now depends on sustaining the
current permanent resident immigration rate of 250,000 per year. The need for
growth drives competition for permanent resident immigrants among urban areas
across the country, and patterns are changing as a result. For example, between 2001 and 2009, Regina's
population of new permanent resident immigrants grew by 279%, and Saskatoon's
In contrast, Toronto saw a 34% decrease in its number of new
permanent resident immigrants.
While immigrants are more spread out across the country, the
source of landed immigrants has also changed.
Prior to 1961, 90% of landed immigrants were European and only 3% were
Asian. Fast-forward to 2001-2006 when
just 16% of landed immigrants were European and, at 46%, Asia was the largest
single source of landed immigrants.
Looking ahead, the permanent resident immigration rate is
expected to remain at approximately 250,000 per year. Virtually all of Canada's
population growth will be in the visible minority population. By 2031 the
visible minority population is expected to more than double to 12.9 million,
representing close to a third of Canada's population. That will result in
visible "minorities" constituting approximately 60% of the population in Toronto
and Vancouver CMAs (census metropolitan areas) and over 20% of the population
in 12 other CMAs by 2031.
Maintaining Canada's annual population growth rate of
approximately 1% depends on sustaining the current permanent resident
immigration rate of 250,000 per year.
The Challenge for
Within diverse communities, how do we find out if there is
support for our mission and how do we engage in fundraising activities? Sadly
there is no roadmap, guidebook or "magic bullet" to help us. However, there is good news. According to Nicole Nakoneshny, not only do
we know more than we think we do about fundraising in multicultural
communities, but the same general fundraising principles apply.
Linkage, interest, ability
If a group has no interest in your cause or organization,
they are not likely to become donors. Interest can be developed through an
authentic partnership that goes beyond fundraising. The community must see
themselves served by and reflected by your organization, and then giving will
"What you do must reflect and serve the community in some
way," Maytree Foundation
president Ratna Omidvar
once told Nakoneshny. "For
the community to have an interest in having a relationship with you, your
organization must provide programs and services that authentically engage and
serve its needs."
's partnership with the Pakistani-Muslim community led to that
community raising $1 million for the hospital. It started when the hospital
realized that the Pakistani-Muslim community was an important one in their
area. They knew that that particular community
needed to be reflected and served by their organization, so they started
serving halal food and providing female staff for female patients wherever
It is important to meet multicultural donors where they are.
When the Surrey Memorial Hospital
reached out to the Sikh community to help raise money, they
responded by organizing a radiothon on the local Sikh radio station. Sikh deejays made the ask over the air and the
community responded by bringing cheques to the radio station or mailing them.
That radiothon raised millions of dollars.
But wait ... there's more!
Environics Analytics has used mainstream marketing
techniques based on segmentation by geographical location to identify and
locate potential donor groups. This
research hones in on specific giving patterns, behaviours and values among
multicultural segments such as "Suburban Families" and "Established
In general in Canada we are still at the early stages of
multicultural marketing, but there's interest in it by all industries. Multicultural marketing is the new
For more information visit www.kciphilanthropy.com
, specifically Issue 2 of 2011 Trends magazine, and www.environicsanalytics.ca.
a Toronto-based fundraiser with over7 years of small shop fundraising
experience in Canada and the UK. Recently she started Kathryn McKechnie Consulting, focused on providing advice,
resources and hands-on fundraising services for emerging charities and small
shops. She sits on the Board of
Directors and is Chair of the Fundraising Committee for the Scarborough Women's Centre. Contact
Kathryn by email or 647-459-4858.