CPA Alberta thanks all community organizations and volunteers who gave their time and commitment to the Tax Clinic Program this year! It was certainly one for the history books, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Three days into the program, CPA Alberta had to temporarily postpone the program and adjust the tax clinics session to meet the needs of our taxpayers and organizations. CPA Alberta was not surprised that so many resilient and resourceful volunteers rose to the occasion. Volunteers learned new technologies and skills to ease pressure for low income members in the communities. Volunteers also assisted community members with tax return preparation in-person, over the phone, and through virtual tools such as ShareFile and ZOOM. CPA Alberta can’t thank the volunteers and community organizations enough for their flexibility during this time and for finding new ways to make things work!
Although the Tax Clinic Program experienced a short hiatus to allow for restructuring, 123 volunteers were still able to prepare 1,830 tax returns at 42 organizations for low income Albertans. This is no small accomplishment and CPA Alberta appreciates the efforts of each individual volunteer!
Challenge – Winner
The winner of this year’s Tax Clinic Challenge is Michael Bejerman CPA, CMA. Michael prepared 174 returns for this year’s program and has been an extremely reliable and engaged volunteer throughout the program. Congratulations Michael, and thank you for going above and beyond for members in the community!
What to Expect Next Year
CPA Alberta found that the virtual Tax Clinic Program was well-received by many of the volunteers. While in-person tax clinics are rewarding in their own ways; utilizing the ShareFile system meant that volunteers had the freedom to prepare tax returns according to their personal schedules, from home (or elsewhere), and even while wearing their pajamas! The convenience of the virtual clinics resulted in an increase in the number of returns completed per volunteer—a very promising outcome! Based on information gathered from community partners, it is likely next year’s program will be offered virtually as well.
Thank you to all volunteers and organizations. CPA Alberta looks forward to working with you again next year!
Additional Tax Clinic Volunteer Opportunities
Although the CPA Alberta Volunteer Tax Clinic Program has come to an end for 2020, volunteer opportunities exist year round with the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program (CVITP), in collaboration with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
If you have volunteered in 2020 with CPA Alberta and were able to EFILE tax returns, you are likely registered as a CVITP volunteer. There are still plenty of opportunities for registered CVITP volunteers to help their communities by preparing taxes for a number of organizations across the province. To search organizations in your area which are running free virtual tax clinics, please click here.
If you are currently a CVITP volunteer affiliated with CPA Alberta, you will be required to affiliate with other organizations if you wish to volunteer for them. You do not need to be a member of an organization to participate, and you can be affiliated with more than one organization.
If you are unable to affiliate with an organization on your own, a CRA coordinator can help by providing you with a list of CVITP organizations in your area that are looking for volunteers. For more information regarding volunteering for the CVITP, please click here or call 1-866-315-8833.