North Vancouver writer and researcher Vivian Krause released her documentary, Over a Barrel, not too long ago on Vimeo, after showings in Calgary and Edmonton. She explains how hundreds of millions of dollars were provided by American foundations to groups in Canada to oppose the export of Canadian oil and gas by tankers. She points out that the B.C. coast is targeted, but not Alaska, Oregon, or California, where you can see offshore drilling rigs from the beach. If you don’t know about Krause’s work and methodology, and the controversies it creates, you should. Look her up.

Originally launched in 2016, this year marks the beginning of the fourth chapter of the VS brand platform. To-date the SickKids VS Limits campaign has reached almost 75 percent of it’s $1.3 billion goal – the largest fundraiser in Canadian health care history.

While fires ravage Australia, the world has inundated the country’s fire services and other non-profit organizations with tens of millions of dollars in donations. It’s a challenge for a country more accustomed to being a donor than a recipient. The nation is trying to efficiently distribute huge sums of money and to decipher donors’ sometimes vague intentions.

“We don’t normally get phone calls from people who want to give $1 million and beyond” – Belinda Dimovski, the director of engagement at the Australian Red Cross (NY Times).

The Pecking Order 2020 report from the World Animal Protection organization ranks how fast food restaurants are performing on chicken welfare globally, revealing some alarming findings. This means consumers are unwittingly buying meat from chickens that are subject to unnecessary suffering and cruelty. Before ending up on your plate, most of the birds were raised in cramped, barren environments with no sunlight. Many suffered from lameness and skin lesions as a result of intensive breeding for fast growth and large size. This also places huge pressure on their heart, lungs and legs. The companies assessed are Burger King, Domino’s Pizza Group, Domino’s Inc, KFC, McDonald’s, Nando’s, Pizza Hut, Starbucks and Subway. One chain received a score of ‘0’, indicating they have no interest in improving chicken welfare. www.worldanimalprotection.ca to see the report.

The Wall Street Journal on January 8, 2020 in an opinion piece entitled “The War on Philanthropy: Private giving achieves what government can’t – which is why authoritarians hate it” basically provides an unabashed defence of philanthropy and response to those who criticize philanthropy for advancing more the interests of billionaires than the public interest. Canadian charity lawyer Mark Bloomberg counters. “In my view, there is no ‘war’ on philanthropy. There have been many commentators over the last few years raising concerns about growing inequality of wealth and also how charities and foundations operate with large tax incentives for those who donate and in some cases very little transparency and accountability.”

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The Editor

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