Save the Children Canada

4141 Yonge Street, Suite 300
Toronto, ON M2P 2A8
President & CEO: Danny Glenwright
Board Chair: Richard Stursberg

Charitable Reg. #:10795 8621 RR0001


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

[Charity Rating: 4/5]


Most recent Audited financial statements 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) 65 cents are available for programs.

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About Save the Children Canada:

Founded in 1921, Save the Children Canada works toward a world where every child has the right to survival and protection. As a part of the global Save the Children network of 29 national charities, it works to improve children’s rights in 117 countries. The charity aims to meet immediate needs by providing food and health services, as well as improve lives in the long term through education and advocacy for gender equality. 

Ci's Special report on Ukraine: How to help

In F2020, Save the Children Canada spent $29.7m on international programs (94% of total program costs). It spent 46% of program costs in West Africa, 21% in East Africa, 19% in the Middle East, 5% in South America, and 3% in Central America, South Africa, and Asia. The remaining 6% of program costs went to programs in Canada.

International Programs: In 2019, Save the Children Canada reached a total of 38 million children. Through its 83 emergency responses during the year, it helped 15.5 million children in 53 countries. In 2019, the charity responded to emergencies in Ukraine, where armed conflict since 2014 has affected five million people, and Syria, where 11.7 million people need emergency aid due to the ongoing civil war. In Syria, Save the Children Canada has helped to fund two reproductive health centres, six family planning clinics, seven vaccination centres, and 90 education facilities.

In 2019, Save the Children Canada also reached 26.8 million children through health and nutrition projects, 7.7 million children through education programs, and 3.4 million children through child protection services. Its health projects train local health workers, fund maternal and reproductive health services, and send food for newborn children. Through its education programs, the charity provides safe learning facilities and advocates for gender equality in education. Save the Children Canada’s child protection programs create Child Friendly Spaces where children can play, socialize, and receive psychosocial support.

Canadian Programs: Save the Children Canada’s main domestic program is its National Reconciliation Program. The charity reports that the child poverty rate among Indigenous children is 40%. Through the program, it works with local communities and child rights experts to improve Indigenous education and health outcomes. Save the Children Canada distributes books to raise literacy among Indigenous children and funds culturally-sensitive maternal, newborn, and child health clinics. In 2019, Save the Children Canada reached 16,255 Indigenous people across 65 communities.

Recent News: In April 2019, Sir Alan Parker resigned as the international organization’s chairman after allegations that the UK charity failed to investigate the alleged sexual abuse and inappropriate behaviour of former executives, Justin Forsyth and Brendan Cox towards a Canadian working with senior management.

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Results and Impact

Save the Children Canada has not yet posted its 2020 annual report at the time of this update. These results refer to 2019.

Along with World Vision Canada and Plan International Canada, Save the Children Canada designed the Born on Time (BOT) program in 2015 to reduce preterm births and promote healthy, full-term pregnancies. The BOT program addresses risk factors that lead to preterm pregnancies, such as unhealthy lifestyles, maternal infections, low nutrition, and limited access to contraceptives. The BOT program reached 1,031,071 women and 275,614 girls in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Mali. Save the Children Canada reports that since the program began, the proportion of women aged 20 to 49 using a modern method of contraception has risen to 69% in Bangladesh (63% initially), 52% in Ethiopia (41% initially), and 34% in Mali (13% initially).

While Ci highlights these key results, they may not be a complete representation of Save the Children Canada’s results and impact.

Charity Intelligence has given Save the Children a Good impact rating based on demonstrated impact per dollar spent.

Impact Rating: Good

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Save the Children Canada received donations of $14.9m in F2020. It also received $25.8m in government funding (60% of revenues), $1.3m in international grants (3%), and $625k in donated goods (1%). Administrative costs are 6% of revenues (less investment income) and fundraising costs are 29% of Canadian donations. This results in total overhead spending of 35%. For every dollar donated to the charity, 65 cents go to the cause. This is just within Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending. The charity was previously outside of this reasonable range. However, its donations increased by 23% while fundraising costs fell by 9% in F2020, leading to a lower fundraising ratio.

Save the Children Canada has $20.3m in total funding reserves. The charity can cover 65% or nearly eight months of annual program costs with its existing reserves.

According to its annual filing with the Charities Directorate, Save the Children Canada used external fundraisers in F2020. It paid $1.9m to external fundraisers and does not report how much they raised. This is a mandatory filing.

Charity Intelligence has sent this update to Save the Children Canada for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on July 12, 2021 by Eric Zhao.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending December
Administrative costs as % of revenues 5.8%5.9%6.5%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 29.0%39.2%33.5%
Total overhead spending 34.8%45.1%39.9%
Program cost coverage (%) 65.0%26.4%40.6%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 14,91212,15711,755
International donations 1,3173,4481,844
Goods in kind 625278468
Government funding 25,79030,10430,939
Investment income 11711238
Total revenues 42,76146,10045,044
Program costs - International 29,69938,00439,750
Program costs - Canada 1,4781,0121,378
Donated goods exp 625278468
Administrative costs 2,4732,7242,910
Fundraising costs 4,3234,7653,933
Other costs (40)23(1)
Total spending 38,55946,80748,438
Cash flow from operations 4,202(707)(3,393)
Capital spending 432810
Funding reserves 20,27010,28516,692

Note: Ci adjusted donations by changes in deferred donations and foundation contributions. This affected revenues by $2.1m in F2020, $451k in F2019, and ($4.9m) in F2018. In F2018, the charity’s financial statements included unrealized gains in expenses rather than revenues. Ci reported unrealized gains (losses) as investment income in all three years, affecting revenues and expenses by ($32k) in F2018. Ci removed donations in kind from donations and international program costs to report them separately. Ci reported foreign exchange losses (gains) as other costs, affecting total expenses by ($40k) in F2020, $23k in F2019, and ($1k) in F2018.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 53

Avg. compensation: $92,904

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 F2020

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

The following report was added as a comment in 2018. New comments may be forthcoming.

Save the Children International - Trustees' Report

Charity Contact

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 1-800-668-5036


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Charitable Registration Number: 80340 7956 RR0001