New data from Statistics Canada shows that communities in southeastern Manitoba continue to trend above the national average when it comes to charitable donations.

Statistics Canada released data this week from the 2022 tax year. The median donation per tax filer in Canada that year was $380 and for Manitoba, it was $590. Both those averages are up from 2021. The median amount represents the middle point: half of the donors gave more than the median and the other half gave less. 

Spokesperson Brennan Barnhart says what they noticed from 2021 to 2022 is fewer small donations. Those are the donations of less than $500. As a result, he says this is pulling the median donation up slightly.  

When you take a look at charitable donations per tax filer in southeastern Manitoba, most communities are trending much higher than the provincial and national numbers. Leading the way was Blumenort with a median donation of $3,780, which was up $70 from 2021. Next on that list was Kleefeld at $2,320, then Steinbach at $2,240, then Grunthal at $1,990, then Landmark at $1,790, then New Bothwell at $1,580, then Niverville at $1,270, then St. Pierre at $810, then La Broquerie at $690, then Ste. Anne at $670, then St. Malo at $490, and Lorette at $420.

"Steinbach and sort of that southern southeastern Manitoba area, they have the highest average, the highest median donation," adds Barnhart.

As mentioned, Steinbach's median donation was $2,240. Similar to 2021, that is the highest average among all Census Metropolitan Areas (CMA) and Census Agglomerations (CA) in Canada. CMAs have a population of over 100,000, while CAs have a population of over 10,000. Winkler ranks number two on that list.

When it comes to the percentage of tax filers claiming a donation in 2022, the national average was 17.1 per cent, while the provincial average was 19.3 per cent. Both those percentages dropped from 2021. 

"It's a trend we've been noticing over the last almost 10 years," says Barnhart. "The number of people donating and the number of tax filers reporting charitable donations is continuing to fall."

Meanwhile, Barnhart says of all urban centres in Canada, Steinbach is also the area with the greatest ratio of donations to total income. In Steinbach, the ratio of total donations to total income per tax filer is three per cent, while in Winkler it is 2.6 per cent. Barnhart says that is considerably higher than the national average of .7 per cent.