411 41 Ave. NE
Calgary, AB T2E 2N4
Executive Director: Stacey Petersen
Board Chair: Craig H. Borgland

Charitable Reg. #:13672 0737 RR0001


Ci's Star Rating is calculated based on the following independent metrics:

[Charity Rating: 4/4]



Audited financial statements for current and previous years available on the charity’s website.



Grade based on the charity's public reporting of the work it does and the results it achieves.



The demonstrated impact per dollar Ci calculates from available program information.


Charity's cash and investments (funding reserves) relative to how much it spends on programs in most recent year.



For a dollar donated, after overhead costs of fundraising and admin/management (excluding surplus) 83 cents are available for programs.

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About Fresh Start Recovery Centre:

Founded in 1992, Fresh Start Recovery Centre (Fresh Start) is a live-in alcohol and drug addiction treatment centre for men in Calgary, Alberta. Fresh Start reports that 90% of Canadians who need treatment do not receive it. In addition to this, it says that 13.6% of Canadians are high-risk drinkers and 8% of hospitalizations in Canada are a result of substance abuse. Fresh Start recognizes that for recovery to be successful, family and friends must also be able to heal. Therefore, Fresh Start offers treatment for men and a family healing program.

A Charity Intelligence 2019 Top 10 Impact Charity

Fresh Start Recovery Centre’s 40,000 square foot home has a total of 96 beds (50 primary treatment beds and 46 in post-treatment housing with supports). The house has 26 residents’ rooms, counselling rooms, a meditation room, gymnasium, dining hall, weight room, games room, movie theatre, laundry room, wellness clinic, and more. The building is big, vibrant, and designed to feel like a home to create an ideal setting for men and their families to recover.

Fresh Start offers a 14 to 16-week program with one-on-one counselling, group healing, physical training, nutritious meals, and other supports. The program is based on the 12-Step abstinence model of recovery. In F2018, 134 men entered Fresh Start’s 12-Step live-in program.

In August 2018, Fresh Start launched its Eleven-Eleven food truck. This project helps Fresh Start to celebrate recovery, reach and educate people about addiction, and generate funds by selling food. The Eleven-Eleven food truck received coverage from local media, and Fresh Start is looking to expand that coverage and awareness in 2019.

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Results and Impact

Of the 134 men that entered Fresh Start’s 12-Step live-in program in F2018, 89 men (66.4%) graduated and 81 (60%) men celebrated one full year of recovery. The percentage of successful graduates over the years has decreased from 80.2% in 2016 and 71.9% in 2017. However, the percentage of men celebrating one full year of recovery has been steadily increasing over the years from 54.9% in 2016 to 53.2% in 2017.

While Ci highlights these key results, they may not be a complete representation of Fresh Start Recovery Centre’s results and impact.

Charity Intelligence has rated Fresh Start as High impact based on demonstrated impact per dollar.

A Charity Intelligence 2018 Top 10 Impact Charity

Impact Rating: High

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Fresh Start is a ­­­­medium-sized charity, with total donations of $1.3m in F2018. Administrative costs are 4% of revenues (excluding investment income) and fundraising costs are 14% of donations. For every dollar donated, 83 cents go to the cause. This is within Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending.

­­Fresh Start’s interest-bearing debts exceed its gross funding reserves of $392k. Excluding interest-bearing debts, Fresh Start could operate using reserve funds for less than one month.

This charity report is an update that has been sent to Fresh Start Recovery Centre for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on June 5, 2019 by Lauren Chin.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending December
Administrative costs as % of revenues 3.5%1.1%3.2%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 13.7%7.0%8.3%
Total overhead spending 17.2%8.1%11.5%
Program cost coverage (%) 15.2%163.9%(47%)

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $s
Donations 1,305,7261,793,3811,067
Government funding 1,762,7705,625,303156
Fees for service 1,400,4231,364,0861,180
Business activities (net) (88,989)(7,965)0
Other income 379,216403,2090
Total revenues 4,759,1469,178,0142,403
Program costs 2,568,4942,212,6532,339
Administrative costs 164,87199,69978
Fundraising costs 179,139125,12189
Other costs 46,92454,20258
Total spending 2,959,4302,491,6802,563,970
Cash flow from operations 1,799,7186,686,339(161)
Capital spending 2,016,1206,119,99010,143
Funding reserves 391,6573,625,752(1,100)

Note: Ci reported Restaurant and food truck sales nets of costs. This reduced total revenues by $109k in F2018 and $8k in F2017. Ci reports F2016 financials as restated by the charity. Ci has adjusted for deferred contributions, affecting revenues by ($505k) in F2016.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 30

Avg. Compensation $55,122

Top 10 staff salary range

$350k +
$300k - $350k
$250k - $300k
$200k - $250k
$160k - $200k
$120k - $160k
$80k - $120k
$40k - $80k
< $40k

Information from most recent CRA Charities Directorate filings for F2017

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

While the Canadian economy in 2018 was surprisingly strong, Alberta did not fare as well because of continued uncertainty around the ability to get natural resources to market. This uncertainty negatively impacted donations to Fresh Start by more than 27% and had an impact on the Fundraising Cost to Dollars donated ratio. A strategic investment in fundraising capacity to develop longer term streams of donations also contributed to the increase in this benchmark. 

The poor economy combined with the Opioid (Fentanyl) crisis in 2018 created increased demand and urgency for services. Working to address this demand in addition to a move towards strengthening our post treatment support translated into increase costs and  corresponding increase in men celebrating their first full year of sobriety from 53.2% to 60.0%.

Charity Contact

Website: www.freshstartrecovery.ca
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