261 Duckworth Street
St. John's, NL A1C 1G9
Executive Director: Sheldon Pollett
Board Chair: Geoff Davis

Charitable Reg. #:13088 9942 RR0001


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

[Charity Rating: 3/5]



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) 63 cents are available for programs.

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About Choices for Youth:

Choices for Youth is a 3-star charity that is financially transparent. It has overhead spending outside Ci's reasonable range and an average results reporting grade.

Founded in 1990, Choices for Youth (CFY) helps vulnerable youth in St. John's secure stable housing and employment. CFY takes a "housing first" approach. The charity first finds people a stable place to live and then helps them with employment, family relationships, and other needs. The charity states that youth homelessness increases the rates of many negative outcomes. These outcomes include unemployment, exposure to criminal activity and risk of suicide. In F2023, CFY reported serving 1,347 youth.

A Charity Intelligence 2023 Top 100 Rated Charity

CFY runs four programs: Social Enterprises and Youth Employment; Housing; Health and Outreach; and Family. The charity spent $8.8m on its programs in F2023.

The Social Enterprises and Youth Employment program received 38% of total program spending. This program works to find meaningful employment for at-risk youth. CFY trains and employs youth at its four social enterprises. In F2023 CFY opened its newest social enterprise, Crust Craft Bakery, to provide youth with experience in the food industry. In F2023, CFS employed 87 youth at its social enterprises. The charity also helps youth find employment outside of CFY social enterprises. In F2023, CFY bought a building for a new Social Enterprise Hub for $11.3m.

The Housing program received 37% of total program spending. CFY runs four specific housing programs. The Choices Shelter welcomes youth between 16-29 years of age who identify as male or gender non-conforming. Youth can stay at the Choices Shelter for up to a month. The Lily and Rally Forward provide longer term housing for youth in need. The Lily also runs programs that teach residents life skills. The Soft Landing program helps youth enter the rental housing market and maintain their housing once renting. In F2023, Soft Landing supported 60 youth.

The Health and Outreach program received 13% of total program spending. The charity’s Outreach and Youth Engagement Centre (OYEC) provides mental and physical health support for youth. This centre is a satellite site for the Safe Works Access Program (SWAP). SWAP provides a safe location for youth to access supplies such as naloxone kits and safe injection tools. In F2023, CFY provided 740 SWAP unique SWAP services.

The Family program received 12% of total program spending. This program provides support to families so they stay connected with each other. In F2023, CFY supported 115 moms and 153 children. CFY also supported 63 youth through a therapist/counselor.

Choices for Youth states the homelessness issue is provincial in scope. It states that almost 60% of the homeless population in St. John's comes from other parts of Newfoundland and Labrador (NL). Based on this, CFY is supporting the development of four NL Integrated Youth Services sites over the next two years. These sites will provide the same support that the OYEC does.

Subsequent to F2023 Year End - In February 2024 CFY received $4.3m in new funding. $1.4m came from philanthropic foundations and $2.9m from government funding. CFY is expanding to the West side of St. John's with a renovated building opening summer 2024 on LeMarchant Road. CFY purchased this property for $703k. This building will house more locations for the charities social enterprises and its partners. It will also have a training school and office space. The goal of this expansion is to provide job skill training for up to 100 youth each year. CFY has a goal to expand to eight rural locations, with two locations initially. This will provide support in rural communities where youth services do not exist. These locations will provide youth with a hot meal a day, onsite primary care, substance use and addiction support, and mental health counseling.

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Results and Impact

In F2023, Choices for Youth housed 179 youth.

While Ci highlights these key results, they may not be a complete representation of Choices for Youth’s results and impact.

The charity is not yet rated on impact (n/r).

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In F2023 Choices for Youth received $1.2m in cash donations. CFY also received $7.1m in government funding, representing 53% of its total revenues. 

Administrative costs are 10% of revenues. Fundraising costs are 27% of donations. This results in total overhead spending of 37%. For every dollar donated, 63 cents go to the cause. This falls outside Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending.

In F2023 Choices for Youth spent $8.8m on its programs, which is 69% of total revenue excluding goods in kind. Capital expenditures were $3.9m. In F2023 it had a surplus of $2.4m. 

CFY has $3.2m in gross funding reserves and $463k in interest-bearing debt. This results in net funding reserves of $2.7m. The net funding reserves can cover 31%, or four months of program costs. 

In F2023 CFY changed auditors from MNP LLP to Grant Thornton. Figures from F2022 were restated to fit with the presentation found in F2023.

This charity report is an update that has been sent for review to Choices for Youth. Changes and edits may be forthcoming. 

Updated on June 5, 2024, by Grady Simpson.


Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending March
Administrative costs as % of revenues 9.7%11.4%10.6%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 27.1%20.6%42.1%
Total overhead spending 36.8%32.0%52.7%
Program cost coverage (%) 30.6%51.7%19.0%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 1,2151,444676
Goods in kind 69000
Government funding 7,1438,7617,577
Fees for service 222217232
Business activities (net) 803646808
Investment income 226
Other income 3,78100
Total revenues 13,85711,0709,298
Program costs 8,8147,1986,557
Donated goods exp 69000
Administrative costs 1,3421,261981
Fundraising costs 329298285
Total spending 11,1768,7567,823
Cash flow from operations 2,6822,3141,476
Capital spending 3,906199201
Funding reserves 2,7003,7241,245

Note: DEFERRED ADJUSTMENT: Choices for Youth uses deferred accounting. To show donors information on a consistent basis, Ci adjusted for these deferred revenues. This affected non-government revenues by $70k in F2023, $412k in F2022, and ($125k) in F2021. Deferred adjustments affected government revenues by ($1.2m) in F2023, $1.8m in F2022, and $1.4m in F2021. SOCIAL ENTERPRISES: Revenues from social enterprise are reflected in business activities revenue but are not presented net. Ci reported social enterprise costs as program costs. DEFERRED CONTRIBUTIONS RELATED TO DEPRECIABLE ASSETS: Ci recorded $3.7m in deferred contributions related to depreciable capital assets as other revenue in F2023.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 95

Avg. compensation: $70,453

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 F2023

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

No comments have been added by the charity.

Charity Contact

Website: www.choicesforyouth.ca
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 709-754-0446


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Charitable Registration Number: 80340 7956 RR0001