Introduction

Non-profit organizations are able to easily showcase their projects on the Crowdfunding Alberta platform and share them with their networks and communities. Albertans seeking to support causes that are meaningful for them can search the platform, support and share campaigns and contribute to a strong and connected non-profit sector.

How it works

Through the Crowdfunding Alberta platform, organizations create their campaigns and invite supporters to share on social media and donate. The organization receives all of the donations raised, less third party payment processing fees and platform fees, whether they reach their funding goal or not.

  • Read more about fees.

Non-profits will establish how often the campaign donations are deposited to best align with bookkeeping and reporting needs. If an organization receives top-up funding from us, it will be deposited via electronic funds transfer (EFT) after qualifying for top-up funding.

The Alberta government administers and funds the Crowdfunding Alberta platform in partnership with ConnectionPoint Systems Inc.

Supporting non-profits

Everyone is invited to support as many campaigns as they wish. If the campaign is run by a charity registered with the Canada Revenue Agency the donation is eligible for a charitable tax receipt.

Only registered charities or non-profits with tax-exempt status are able to issue tax receipts through the platform system. In that case, donors will receive a receipt in an email a few minutes after receiving a payment notification email with the transaction details.

Top-up funding

Eligible campaigns can receive up to $2,500 in additional funding from the Government of Alberta.

If your campaign reaches 75% of its fundraising goal within 4-weeks of going live on the platform we may add up to $2,500, depending on the size of your campaign, to help get you the rest of the way.

Fees

Payment processing fees

Fees depend on the charitable status of the non-profit. Non-profits who are not registered with Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) usually pay a fee of 2.9% plus $0.30 per transaction. Non-profits who are registered with CRA and have provided supporting documentation to Stripe and PayPal usually qualify for a discounted charity rate.

  • Stripe – the charity rate is 2.2% plus $0.30 per transaction for most major credit cards and 3.5% plus $0.30 per transaction for American Express cards.
  • PayPal – the charity rate is 1.6% plus $0.30 per transaction for most major credit cards.

Visit Stripe or PayPal for more information

Platform fees

In addition to payment processing fees, there may also be fees for using the crowdfunding platform. The platform fees range from 0% to 5% payable to our platform partner, ConnectionPoint Systems Inc. ConnectionPoint Systems Inc. offers 3 payment models for your organization to choose from: Free, Standard and Pro.

Free model

With the Free model, non-profits do not pay a platform transaction fee to ConnectionPoint. Instead, during the checkout process, donors are asked if they will leave ConnectionPoint a completely optional small tip to help operate the platform and keep fundraising free for the non-profit. Historically, about 70% of donors are willing to do this.

Standard model

With the Standard model, non-profits pay a platform transaction fee of 5% to ConnectionPoint. This model is most often used when the non-profit has a government partner, corporate sponsor, major donor, or endowment who is willing to pay the fees on behalf of the non-profit and allow them to say, ‘100% of each donation goes to our work’.

Pro model

With the Pro model, non-profits pay a platform transaction fee of 5% to ConnectionPoint. During the checkout process, donors are asked if they are willing to pay all the payment processing and platform fees on behalf of the non-profit. Historically, between 82% and 93% of donors are willing to do this, depending on the project. This results in an effective combined per-transaction fee of less than 2%, that is, less expensive than even the Free model.

More information

The models can be individually applied to different campaigns and changed at any time, so non-profits are free to use the models best suited to the evolving needs of their projects and community of supporters.

With each of the pricing models, the non-profits pay the payment processing fees as previously described. The models are not an upgrade structure – each offers full access to all the functionality of the platform with one small exception; the Free model does not support recurring (monthly) donations as the model of asking for a tip repeatedly is not workable from a donor experience point-of-view.

The 5% platform fee will not apply to any top-up funding provided by the Government of Alberta as they do not flow through the platform

Running a successful campaign

Non-profits are able to run as many campaigns as they would like, but should plan to ensure they are as successful as possible.

Crowdfunding Alberta has dedicated a section of its platform to Crowdfunding Resources to help guide non-profit organizations in creating and promoting campaigns.

Eligibility

Read the Crowdfunding Alberta fact sheet

Top-up funding eligibility criteria

Organization

In addition to the eligibility requirements noted in the fact sheet, to qualify for Government of Alberta top-up funding organizations must:

  • have not already received top-up funding through the program in the current fiscal
  • operate at arms-length from one of the above stated ineligible organizations
  • be registered and in good standing for a period of one year with any of the acts stated above
  • have up-to-date accounting and reporting relating to any grant previously awarded by Culture and Status of Women, or the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, or both
  • have a minimum campaign target of $5,000
  • complete the top-up funding disbursement agreement

    completion does not guarantee funding

Campaign

A wide variety of campaigns are permitted on the Crowdfunding Alberta platform. Only organization or peer-to-peer led campaigns that demonstrate the following will be eligible for Government of Alberta top-up funding:

  • at least 75% of the campaign goal has been raised through cash contributions received, exclusively, on the platform (assets and in-kind donations are not accepted):
    • no more than $500 from any donor will be credited for the purpose of reaching the 75% threshold for top-up funding
    • funds must be raised within 4 weeks of the campaign start date. Campaigns may continue beyond 4 weeks but will not be eligible for top-up funding
  • is raising funds in support of the following organizational needs:
    • operating
    • capital and equipment
    • programming
    • staff training
    • wages and benefits
    • research and development
  • supports initiatives to provide programs or services to community members. Campaigns in the name of, or for the benefit of, a specific individual will not be eligible for top-up funding.

Campaigns ineligible for top-up funding

While permissible on the platform, campaigns that reflect of any of the following are not permitted to receive top-up funding:

  • offer perks or rewards to contributors
  • raise funds for any of the following purposes:
    • discretionary severance packages
    • staff bonuses or other discretionary income paid to staff
    • flow-through funds to another organization
    • prizes

Create or support a campaign

Crowdfunding Alberta Program

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