Contributing Citizens: Modern Charitable Fundraising and the Making of the Welfare State, 1920-66

Contributing Citizens tells the social, cultural, and political history of Community Chests, the forerunners of today's United Way, to provide a unique perspective on the evolution of professional fundraising, private charity, and the development of the welfare state. Blending a national perspective with rich case studies of Halifax, Ottawa, and Vancouver, Shirley Tillotson shows that fundraising work in the mid-twentieth century involved organizing and promoting social responsibility in new ways, sometimes coercively. In the 1940s and 1950s, fundraisers adopted the language of welfare state reform and helped to establish both the notion of universal contribution and the foundation of community organization from which major social policies grew. Peopled by a host of forceful characters, this is a lively account of how raising money raised the level of Canadian democracy.