Frequently Asked Questions | Development and Peace

Frequently Asked Questions

Postal appeals and donating by mail
Planned gifts
Monthly donations

Postal appeals and donating by mail

  1. Does Development and Peace issue income tax receipts for donations by mail?
  2. Why did Development and Peace send me this appeal letter?
  3. Why is Development and Peace asking for donations by mail?
  4. How did Development and Peace get my address?
  5. Can I have my name removed from Development and Peace's mailing list?
  6. How is it that I got a letter written in French?
  7. How is it that I got more than one copy of the same letter?
  8. Does the fact that I received a postal appeal mean that Development and Peace no longer has its annual Share Lent campaign?
  9. How much does it cost Development and Peace to reach potential new donors?
  10. What efforts do you make to reduce or minimize these costs?
  11. Do all of these appeal letters produce results?
  12. Is it really a good idea for an organization whose members already collect funds to undertake postal appeals?
  13. How does Development and Peace steward its donors?

YES. Development and Peace has been recognized by Revenue Canada for charitable income tax purposes since 1967. As each receipt costs the organization between $1.25 and $1.50, Development and Peace issues charitable receipts upon request or for all donations of $10 or more.

Quite simply, Development and Peace wrote to you because you showed an interest in poverty and development issues in the Global South in the past.

At the same time, Development and Peace is seeking new sources of funds in order to respond to increasing requests from its partners in Africa, Asia and Latin America, as well as to global emergency relief purposes. These projects are vital and Development and Peace cannot support them without diversifying is funding sources.

In addition, Development and Peace is also attempting to expand its support base in order to ensure its political and financial autonomy in a context where various levels of government are spreading their support to more organizations involved in international solidarity work, and in assisting people in the Global South.

Development and Peace conducted a survey of thousands of its donors and a majority of these identified postal appeals as the preferred new fundraising strategy for the organization.

Postal appeals are also the least costly way for Development and Peace to enter into a direct relationship with its donors; people who want to support the organization's work over the course of the year, or outside of its annual Share Lent campaign in the spring.

Our donors and members also see the mail as the best way to keep people informed on our public education work in Canada and on our partners' sustainable development actions in the Global South.

Development and Peace accesses commercially available mailing lists, for example the list of subscribers to a magazine or newspaper to which you may subscribe. Within the ethical confines of Canadian and Québec laws on access to and the protection of personal information, lists like this are loaned or rented by commercial firms.

Occasionally, Development and Peace shares its own donors list with other charitable organizations who have similar objectives to our own and in this way your contact information helps promote our broader education and fundraising goals. Any such exchanges are subject to Development and Peace's policy on list exchanges, adopted by our National Council in 1999.
If you would prefer that your contact information remain confidential, or if you no longer want to receive appeals from Development and Peace, or from other charitable organizations, we suggest you register annually with the Canadian Marketing Association's Do Not Contact Service for all postal or telephone solicitations.

Of course, Development and Peace does not want to inconvenience its supporters who do not want to deal with postal appeals.

In addition, we closely monitor the frequency of mailings donors want to receive from the organization. If you wish to be excluded from our mailing lists you must advise us:

  1. To receive your funding appeal letters regularly
  2. To receive a letter one a year (in December)
  3. To donate only through my parish
  4. To not receive mail solicitations
  5. To not receive telephone solicitations

By e-mail at (please include your full name, address, postal code and telephone number)

By telephone:
Toll free at 1 888 234-8533 or for the Montreal area at 514 257-8711

By fax:
514 257-8497

By mail:
Development and Peace,
1425 René-Lévesque Blvd. West, 3rd Floor
Montreal (Quebec) H3G 1T7

Development and Peace adheres strictly to all applicable privacy laws, and as a member or donor your name and address are held in strict confidence by our national office at: 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd. West, 3rd Floor, Montreal (Quebec) H3G 1T7

Our main concern is to work with you in carrying out our mission of global solidarity.

We apologize for this type of such error and we will quickly correct your information once you inform us. These errors are often the result of the rush and heavy volume of donations and data that Development and Peace faces at certain times of the year.

Help us correct the error by sending an e-mail, including your full name, address, postal code and telephone number to:

Again, we apologize for the inconvenience. This problem is almost certainly the result of a good thing i.e. you may have made a number of donations to Development and Peace, but under different but very similar names and addresses, eg. Ann Smith vs. Anne J. Smith.

We appreciate your help in eliminating duplication in our mailings by sending an e-mail to: Please remember to include the donor numbers and addresses on each of the duplicate mailings that you received.

Share Lent is the largest special collection in the Canadian Catholic Church. It raises millions of dollars across Canada for hundreds of Southern Partners and will continue to be the organization's major financial campaign.

Rooted in the Lenten tradition of sharing, the Share Lent campaign is very much a part of the life of the Christian community at a high point in the Church's calendar.

Our postal appeals are intended to give Development and Peace donors another opportunity to support the organization's growing number of Southern programs and projects, both WITHIN AND OUTSIDE of the Share Lent campaign. Our partners' needs are not shrinking: in fact, we must work harder to raise more funds to support more projects by our partners.

Donations to postal appeals also support Development and Peace's public education program in Canada and the work of its thousands of members and volunteers across the country.

On average, it costs approximately $10 to reach, and hopefully acquire, a new donor. In terms of fundraising expenses this is a vital necessity, as all fundraising organizations lose a certain percentage of donors with each mailing, due to change of addresses, deaths, etc. Thus each mailing, in order to be effective, must attempt to replace these donor losses (also known as loss through attrition).

This is why all our postal appeals are not just limited to Development and Peace supporters, be they active donors or Global Village Voice newsletter subscribers i.e. those who have expressed an interest in learning more about our organization. This is known as "donor prospecting". This is, quite simply, identifying and mailing material to those who might be interested in contributing to Development and Peace.

Development and Peace tries to keep its administration and fundraising costs to the minimum. To save costs, we work hard to include in every postal appeal mailing a number of contacts we have identified as "potential donors" i.e. those with the same donor profile as some of our current donors.

This is why, within strict limitations, Development and Peace occasionally exchanges the names of those individuals who have agreed to have information exchanged with other charitable organizations, and/or other non-governmental organizations (NGOs), with similar objectives to our own. Beyond benefiting from such exchanges, Development and Peace also tries to rent potential donor lists (if available and if affordable), for instance, subscriber lists of certain newspapers or magazines.

In the constant search for a better balance between costs and quality, practices such as these enable Development and Peace, at a minimal cost, to identify and target individuals likely to be interested in supporting the organization's international development programs.

Since the beginning of the postal appeal program in December 1995, Development and Peace has been able to recruit thousands of supporters, many of whom moved on to become monthly donors or active members. For example, a study of monthly donors indicates that on average most continue to contribute for eight years. At the same time, Development and Peace's thousands of members across the country persevere in their generous support of the organization's educational and fundraising programs. Their work and involvement translates into the equivalent of millions of dollars in irreplaceable support to international solidarity every year!

For the last 40 years, all Development and Peace members and supporters across the country have devoted their energies to organizing the Share Lent campaign, essentially at the parish level. This campaign and network, which is the envy of many other national voluntary organizations, should and must continue. It is vital that we continue to cultivate this exceptional network, particularly in with tight budgets and the organization's limited resources under increasing pressure.

At the same time, there is a growing need to reach the broader public concerned about international solidarity. Even though they are not part of the Church, many people continue to support Christian values. Development and Peace's national and regional offices across the country need to bridge this divide.

In a situation of healthy competition and even imitation involving the growing number of charitable organizations seeking donor support, it is essential that we maintain ongoing links with our donors if we are to gain their ongoing support

One way of preserving donor support, which is part of every postal appeal, is to invite contributors to become monthly donors under the Share Year-Round program.

With Share Year-Round, everyone wins! Both the donor's and the organization's administration costs are reduced. Except in unusual circumstances or for emergency appeals, Share Year-Rounders are excluded from Development and Peace postal appeals.

Planned gifts

  1. What are the advantages of "planned giving"?
  2. What is the difference between a donation and a bequest?

Planned giving allows you to take advantage of tax savings during your lifetime and can also benefit your estate. There are some very interesting tax advantages associated with this type of contribution:

  1. A 15.25% federal tax credit applies to the first $200 of any contribution and 29% to any amount beyond this.
  2. You can also receive a provincial tax credit of up to almost 50%, depending upon the province in which you reside. For example, the provincial tax credit in Quebec is 20% on the first $200 and 24% on amounts beyond this.
  3. What's more, an individual Canadian can claim federal tax credits for donations of up to 75% of his or her net income in any given year.
  4. In addition, a donor's estate can benefit from federal tax credits for charitable donations of up to 100% of his or her net income in the year of death, and in the year immediately preceding the donor's demise.


Sometimes, these two terms are used interchangeably when people are talking about wills but in effect they are not the same thing. A bequest provides for the transfer of goods (money, fixed and movable assets) through a will, which takes effect on the death of an individual, while a donation is a contribution made during a donor's lifetime.


Monthly donations

  1. How much does it cost Development and Peace to process monthly donations by check or credit card?
  2. Are monthly donations credited to our diocesan Share Lent collection?
  3. Are monthly donations added to overall contributions from the donor's parish?

Development and Peace pays the same rate charged to vendors or businesses using credit cards. This means an administration fee of roughly 3% is applied to each monthly donation. For example, Development and Peace pays 51¢ in administration fees on a $17 monthly donation.

This is not the case for contributions via preauthorized withdrawals. In this case, the donor assumes any administrative costs, and these differ depending upon the financial institution and type of bank account involved. Basically, costs can vary between 30¢ and 50¢ per monthly contribution.

In addition, as a charitable organization we have special agreements with some financial institutions, to reduce other costs like those attached to their payment authorization system, which costs roughly $1,000 per year. This system is required to authorize monthly donations via preauthorized withdrawals on various financial institutions.


YES, all monthly donations, with the exception of those contributed in response to postal appeals, are automatically credited to the diocesan Share Lent totals as a result of a November 2003 decision by our National Council.


YES, if the donor tells us which parish and/or diocese to which his or her donation should be credited. Development and Peace's computer system allows all monthly donations to be automatically recorded and credited to the diocesan and/ or parish collections. The system even allows donors to credit their contribution to another parish or diocese they attend but may not reside in.



  1. Do you accept donations for emergencies via the Internet?
  2. How does Development and Peace decide which emergencies to respond to?
  3. How are emergency relief contributions spent?
  4. How does Development and Peace transfer money in emergency situations?
  5. Can I send medicines, blankets and other non-perishable goods?
  6. I would like to volunteer for Development and Peace. What can I do?
  7. I would like to organize a fundraiser for Development and Peace. Do you have materials I can use?
  8. Our group wants to organize a fundraiser for Development and Peace; can we deposit the money that we raise directly into your bank account?

YES, you can contribute over the Internet. Click on the "Make A Donation" link in the menu on the right and follow instructions. Your Internet transaction is entirely safe and secure. In addition, your charitable donation receipt for all contributions of $10, or more, will be issued immediately.


It is often the emergencies that choose Development and Peace and not the reverse. After almost 40 years working in countries where the poorest are often the tragic victims of catastrophe and war, we are recognized for the work we do. Our partners are often hard at work in the affected areas BEFORE the emergency even occurs. For Development and Peace, emergency relief is part of how we must contribute to long-term reconstruction and sustainable development.


Development and Peace support goes to immediate assistance in the form of shelter, medicine, fresh water, blankets, food and other things needed to aid or reduce the number of victims. Development and Peace is also committed to helping the local people rebuild their lives, their communities and their livelihoods over the longer term.


In most circumstances, contributions are channelled directly to Caritas Internationalis, a network of international Catholic development and emergency relief agencies with which Development and Peace has been associated for a number of years. In fact, Development and Peace is the Canadian member of Caritas Internationalis.

Please note, we never channel monies through local governments, nor do we ever allow the local military to distribute emergency aid.


In the majority of cases, it is very expensive to ship goods to disaster areas, so Development and Peace has elected not to do so. In our experience, the transportation costs for material generously donated by Canadians often exceeds the cost of the goods themselves. Most organizations in the field prefer the flexibility offered by financial contributions over gifts-in-kind.

Cash contributions also allow goods to be purchased in the local area or in neighbouring countries that are unaffected by the crisis. This becomes yet another way of helping to re-build and strengthen local and regional economies.


Thank you for offering your help and support. Please, send on your contact information to: and we will be in touch with you if we need additional help and support.

Volunteers are a key component of our network. More than 3,000 members and volunteers are involved in organizing Development and Peace's annual education, advocacy and fundraising campaigns in parishes, schools and communities across the country.


We much appreciate your time and effort. Unfortunately, we do not have materials specifically designed for emergencies. However, you can use the frequently updated material and information on our website.


NO. It is much safer to send your contribution to Development and Peace directly in the form of a single cheque clearly marked for the particular emergency concerned.

It is also important you provide us with a list of the names and addresses of all participants requiring a receipt for income tax purposes (if this is a consideration).