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Ottawa explains cutting assistance for literary magazines in the Maritimes and across Canada / Highlights from a major Maritime fundraiser for Haiti / Phone-in: Would it be easier to give if there were fewer charities ?

It may be a drop in Ottawa's budgetary bucket, but to the editors of two small Maritime magazines where many Canadian writers get their start, it's what keeps them alive. It's the subsidy they used to get from the federal government help cover the cost of publishing and distribution.
The Fiddlehead and The Antigonish Review are both prestigious publications with international reputations. They published the earliest work of renowned Canadian writers such as Alistair Macleod, David Adams Richards, Lynn Coady and Margaret Atwood.
But the publications have annual paid circulation of fewer than 5,000 copies, and under new rules, that means they are no longer eligible for a subsidy from the Canada Periodical Fund, which is administered through the federal Department of Canadian Heritage.
Jeanette Lynes of the Antigonish  Review and Ross Leckie of The Fiddlehead told us that they wondered how their journals could carry on.
Then Scott Shortliffe,  Director of the  Periodical Publishing Policy and Programs with the Department of Canadian Heritage, explained the rationale behind the reorganization of funding criteria.

Local musicians & celebrities performed at the "Halifax for Haiti" benefit concert on Monday, February 8th. They wowed a crowd of nearly 7000 people with music that ranged from rock & hip hop to opera. "Halifax for Haiti" raised more than $135,000, and when those funds  were matched by the federal government, the total raised for the Red Cross topped $270,000.
Jerry West prepared a soundscape of the event for us. As well, Moncton is planning a  "Concert for Haiti: Big Bands, Big Hearts" at 6:30 p.m. at the Central United Church, 150 Queen St. on Wednesday, February 10th.

Speaking of Haiti, it's focused us on a particular branch of charitable fundraising - emergency relief in Haiti. The CBC Haiti site lists 25 organizations to which you can contribute, and there are easily dozens more that aren't as well-known.
But beyond emergency relief there are ongoing year-round charitable efforts. They can be international or local. They can touch on everything from the environment to medical research into a specific disease; from local food banks to protecting wildlife.
For the potential donor, the decision-making process can get complicated. Within any branch of charity, you can't help but notice that some organizations seem to overlap. Or - if you want to look at it another way, they compete.
Do the administration and fundraising costs of charities operating in the same sphere lead to ineffeciencies in getting the greatest bang for the donor's buck ?
Our guest was Cathy Barr, Vice-President of Operations at Imagine Canada, which conducts research into trends and issues for charities and non-profits.
Our question: Would it be easier to give if there were fewer charities ?

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