Canadian Cancer Society
Toronto, ON M4V 2Y7
President & CEO: Lynn Hudson
Board Chair: Robert Lawrie
Charitable Reg. #: 11882 9803 RR0001
Grade: B+The grade is based on the charity's public reporting of the work it does and the results it achieves.
Need for Funding
Cents to The Cause
Full-time staff #945
Avg. Compensation $70,389
Top 10 Staff Salary Range
|$300k - $350k||1|
|$250k - $300k||1|
|$200k - $250k||3|
|$160k - $200k||2|
|$120k - $160k||0|
|$80k - $120k||0|
|$40k - $80k||0|
About Canadian Cancer Society:
Founded in 1938, Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) believes it has had more impact against more cancers in more communities than any other cancer charity in Canada. In the 1940s only 25% of people diagnosed with cancer survived for more than 5 years. In 2014, the survivor rate was 60%. This survival rate varies widely by the type of cancer.1 Currently nearly half of Canadians will be diagnosed with cancer at some point in their lives, and one in four Canadians will die from cancer. In 2017, 206,200 new cases of cancer were diagnosed, a 5% year-over-year increase compared with 196,900 cases in 2016. Half of these cases are lung, colorectal, breast and prostate cancers. Cancer is co-related to aging; 90% of newly-diagnosed cancers are in people older than 50, half of these over age 75. On an age-standardized basis, cancer mortality rates in Canada have declined only 5% since 1955.
Programs: 50% of program spending $51.4 million. Unlike many other large cancer charities, CCS is more than a funder for research; it also runs programs that help people with cancer. These programs have always been the largest part of Canadian Cancer Society’s charity work. The programs provide practical support to people with, and affected by, cancer through online resources, telephone counselling, transportation to and from medical appointments, in addition to wigs and prosthetics.
The best cancer research and medical treatment will be for naught if patients can’t get to medical appointments. One in five Canadians diagnosed with cancer faces transportation challenges. CCS Wheels program coordinates volunteer drivers and reimburses driving costs. In 2017 Ci estimates the Wheels program helped over 40,000 Canadians get to cancer treatment appointments costing an estimated $12 million.
In 2017, CCS’s website received 7 million visits to get information about cancer, 90,000 used its online community for support and resources (a 48% increase over 2016), 46,000 people are members on private messaging groups providing peer support and tips, and more than 5,100 Canadians called in for help. CCS responded to nearly 55,000 inquiries from people with cancer/affected by cancer in their family.
Research grants: 47% of program spending $48.9 million. Canadian Cancer Society runs the Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute (CCSRI). In F2017, CCS funded 287 lead investigations and a total of 342 research projects and awards (average grant size $160k). The largest portion of grants (68%) were in the areas of basic cancer biology, diagnosis and treatment.
Advocacy: 3% of program spending $3.3 million. CCS lobbies for better laws to reduce cancer rates, especially tobacco restrictions, sun tanning beds, asbestos restrictions, better benefits, and more time for people with cancer and caring for family with cancer.
Results and Impact: CCS’s annual report will likely be released in October 2018. The results and impact are for F2017. CCS reports research achievements that include a drug to prevent breast cancer and advances in treating rare childhood cancers.
Canadian Cancer Society is one of Canada’s largest charities, a Major 100 charity with donations and fundraising revenues of $146 million. Total revenues declined by $32 million compared with 2016’s pre-merger pro-forma donations, a 18% decline. In F2018, CCS cut $67 million in costs. Its fundraising costs are 36% of donations and administrative costs are 3% of total revenues. For every dollar donated, 61 cents goes to the cause. This is below what Charity Intelligence considers a reasonable range but is a huge improvement on F2017 overhead costs where only 50 cents went to the cause.
On February 1, 2017 CCS merged with Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation, a mega-merger in Canada’s charity sector between two of the largest charities. More information on the merger:
With the addition of Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation’s stronger balance sheet, CCS’s funding reserves are $135 million. Excluding donor-endowed reserves of $11 million, CCS funding reserves cover its annual programs for 1.3 years.
CCS also has unfunded defined pension liabilities and retirement benefit obligations of $42 million in F2018 ($46 million in F2017). It has cancer research grant commitments for 2019-2023 of $64 million, with $30 million budgeted to be granted this coming year.
External fundraisers disclosure: CCS reports paying external fundraisers $2.6m that raised $28.6m in F2017.
This profile has been sent to Canadian Cancer Society for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.
Profile updated on July 4, 2018 by Kate Bahen.
Financial RatiosFiscal year ending January
|Administrative costs as % of revenues||3.2%||4.9%||3.8%|
|Fundraising costs as % of donations||36.1%||45.6%||43.1%|
|Program cost coverage (%)||130.3%||108.1%||85.9%|
Summary Financial StatementsAll figures in $000s
|Cash flow from operations||10,689||(21,921)||(18,365)|