What We Heard


In the spring of 2019, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) held an online consultation to listen and learn from Canadian charities to better shape future communications approaches and activities, and enhance the website as a key resource for members of the sector. The online consultation was open from May 1 to June 30, via the CRA Engage platform and received a total 21 submissions.

The CRA will take this valuable input into account while it continues to work towards improving its communication efforts with the charitable sector continuing its efforts to put people at the centre of everything it does. Engaging with clients to understand their needs and expectations is an important part of the CRA’s journey to become a more people-centric organization.

Consultation approach

A qualitative approach was taken through an online consultation, drawing responses from both closed and open-ended questions. The consultation results are not representative of the sector at large, but will provide directional insight on how the CRA can streamline its communication efforts.

Participants were recruited to the online consultation using the following methods:

  • Direct email distribution to various stakeholders from the charity sector using the CRA's charities electronic mailing list.
  • Social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook
  • Promotion at in-person spring charities information sessions, held in 15 cities with over 1,350 participants.

What we heard

  • Just under half of respondents said the CRA’s communication efforts have improved this year.
  • Many respondents expressed satisfaction with the charities webpages.
  • Other respondents indicated the website was confusing and that it was at times difficult to find information.
  • Respondents said the website was helpful and a great resource for members of the sector, in general.
  • When asked to rank communications and outreach activities, most users were satisfied while others remained neutral.
  • Respondents who reviewed the videos and infographics said that they are appreciated tools, and design preferences varied.
  • Respondents said that social media is their least preferred channel of communication, which is consistent with informal feedback obtained at charities information sessions  in spring 2019.
  • Many respondents prefer to be contacted by email and find most information by visiting the website.
  • Respondents viewed enhanced web content on the Charities and giving webpages, as well as videos and graphic educational tools as key to the CRA’s outreach and educational efforts.

Next steps

The CRA will continue to:

  • Improve its Charities and giving webpages and make information and guidance easier to find. 
  • Develop more user-friendly products to explain charity rules and obligations for its webpages.