Donations, Sponsorship and Fundraising Policy


Cash Donations

Gifts of cash are accepted and are used to enhance the services of the library system. 

The Library reserves the right to use undesignated donations in the best interest of the Library, and shall make decisions regarding the investment, disposition and/or eventual disposal of all donations.

Both designated and undesignated donations are welcomed. For designated donations, the Library will direct the donation to a specific purpose as outlined by the donor.

Unless otherwise specified by the donor, cash donations received during the year are to be transferred to a Donations Reserve. Use of funds in the Reserve requires Board approval before being spent.

The Board will be informed of individual cash donations of $25,000 or more. Staff will advise the Board of such donations and bring forward a recommendation for use of the funds such as transfer to the Donations Reserve or use for a specific purpose.

Acceptance and handling of cash donations shall adhere to the Library’s Cash Handling Policy.

Donations can be made as follows:

  • Online through Now
  • By contacting HPL’s financial services office as follows:
    • By phone: 905-546-3200 x3239
    • By email:
    • In person/ in writing: 55 York Blvd Hamilton, ON L8N 4E4

CanadaHelps is a non-profit organization (  It facilitates online donations for charities, including the Hamilton Public Library.  In return, CanadaHelps retains a small percentage of each online donation to support their efforts.  HPL’s website connects securely to this site via Now

Endowment Funds

The Library has a long-standing partnership with the Hamilton Community Foundation (HCF) in managing its endowment funds.  Endowments are gratefully accepted and directed by the Library to the HCF (

Endowment funds are administered and managed by the HCF on behalf of the Library.  The principal is used to generate income which is available for Library use.  The Library Board approves the expenditures consistent with the specifications of the funds.

Donors of $25,000 or more may name a fund and choose to direct the donation to a specific field of interest in consultation with the Library Board.

Those interested in making an endowment contribution are encouraged to contact the Library.  Library staff will work together with the donor or the donor’s lawyer, accountant, life insurance agent, or financial planner to establish which type of donation best meets the donor’s goals.

Both the Library and the HCF recognize all donations to endowment funds. Donors of named funds are recognized in the Hamilton Community Foundation’s Annual Report each year.  The wishes of any donors wanting to remain anonymous will be respected.

Gifts In-Kind

Gifts in-kind, also known as non-cash gifts, are gifts of property. They cover items such as artwork, equipment, securities, and cultural and ecological property.

A contribution of service, that is, of time, skills or efforts, is not property and, therefore, does not qualify as a gift or gift in-kind for purposes of issuing official donation receipts. CRA charities giving & glossary

The Library accepts artwork of historic/documentary value related to the history of the City of Hamilton as appropriate and as described in its Collections Policy.

  • The Library does not act as a repository of the works of local artists or of portraits of local persons.
  • The Library does not actively collect, seek or accept unsolicited donations or purchase art for decorative, artistic or commemorative purposes.  The Library may commission art for a new or existing building.
  • The Library Board reserves the right to refuse to accept any artwork considered by it to be inappropriate and/or unsuitable for a library environment.

Valuable Papers/Collections

The Library accepts gifts of papers/collections of historic/documentary value related to the history of the City of Hamilton as determined by its Local History & Archives Policy

Non-cash Gifts

Gifts of securities are welcomed and are directed to the Library’s trust funds managed by the Hamilton Community Foundation.


Gifts of property, real estate and tangible property are administered through the Library’s Financial Services Office.

Deferred Gifts including Bequests/Life Insurance

A deferred gift is arranged now but is not available for use by the Library until some future time, usually after the death of the donor. With a deferred gift, a portion or all of a donor’s assets may be designated by bequest to benefit the Library. Such gifts may be made by Will or beneficiary designation. Persons interested in making deferred gifts are encouraged to contact the Library’s Financial Services Office.