Nova Scotia Nature Trust

81 Prince Albert Road
Dartmouth, NS B2Y 1M1
Executive Director: Bonnie Sutherland
Board President: Peter Wright

Website: www.nsnt.ca
Charitable Reg. #: 88962 7691 RR0001
Sector: Environment
Operating Charity

Donor Accountability

Grade: C

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

Financial Transparency

Audited financial statements for current and previous years available on the charity's website [ Audited financial statement for most recent year ]

Need for Funding

Funding Reserves Program Costs

Spending Breakdown

Cents to The Cause

95¢
75¢
avg
65¢
50¢
2015 2016 2017
For a dollar donated, cents funding the cause after fundraising and admin costs, excluding surplus.

Full-time staff #8

Avg. Compensation $64,046

Top 10 Staff Salary Range

$350k + 0
$300k - $350k 0
$250k - $300k 0
$200k - $250k 0
$160k - $200k 0
$120k - $160k 1
$80k - $120k 1
$40k - $80k 4
< $40k 2
Information from most recent CRA Charities Directorate filings for F2016

About Nova Scotia Nature Trust:

Founded in 1994, Nova Scotia Nature Trust (NSNT) works closely with the Province of Nova Scotia to protect endangered natural land in the province, with a special focus on coastal environments. The charity’s mission is to protect Nova Scotia’s natural legacy through land conservation, with the goal of protecting the province’s native species, unique habitats and natural landscapes in perpetuity. Major programs include: education and outreach to spread awareness about conservation issues, which made up 38% of program costs in F2017; land conservation through land acquisition and easements, which made up 23% of program costs in F2017; land securements, which made up 21% of F2017 program costs; and land stewardship, which made up 13% of program costs. The remaining 5% involves special projects completed during the year. 

Through its land conservation program, NSNT protects ecologically-significant land through purchase, donations and conservation easements. Title to certain properties is transferred to the Province on closing. NSNT has 88 conservation sites that cover more than 10,000 acres as of February 2017.  One site in Barren Meadow contains critical habitat for Blanding's Turtles, which is an endangered species across Canada.

Nova Scotia Nature Trust also runs campaigns and projects to identify and protect ecologically-significant lands in the province. Campaigns also help the charity educate Nova Scotians about the importance of conserving the province’s natural heritage and how to be responsible stewards for the land.

Financial Review:

Nova Scotia Nature Trust is a small-cap charity with total cash donations and special events fundraising of $671k in F2017. The charity’s audited financial statements do not disclose separate fundraising and administrative costs, and Ci could not reconcile the charity’s T3010 CRA filing with the financial statements. Combined fundraising and administrative costs as reported in the financial statements are 35% of revenues. Per dollar donated to the charity, $0.65 goes towards its programs, which falls just within Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending. Excluding donated land, total administrative and fundraising costs rise to 42% of total revenues, falling outside Ci's reasonable range. The charity is in a strong financial position, with funding reserves of $6.9m covering annual program costs for 6.7 years (including the cost of donated land). 

Ci notes that on a cash flow basis, NSNT's financial statements report receiving $161k in cash donations, memberships, grants and fundraising revenue in F2017 (F2016: $2.6m). It also reports spending $1.1m in F2017 on programs, administration and fundraising (F2016: $1.1m). These figures differ from those presented in the charity's income statement and in Ci's financial analysis. 

This charity report is an update that is currently being reviewed by Nova Scotia Nature Trust. Comments and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on August 30, 2017 by Katie Khodawandi.

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending March
201720162015
Fundraising & admin costs as % of revenues 34.6%11.7%10.2%
Program cost coverage (%) 668.0%428.1%211.5%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $s
201720162015
Donations 574,4002,192,1692,123,911
Goods in kind 141,000356,000884,002
Government funding 0167,872231,760
Special events 96,312105,128177,918
Investment income 314,730(33,077)188,877
Total revenues 1,126,4422,788,0923,606,468
Program costs 1,032,5691,578,8592,607,834
Fundraising & administrative costs 280,855330,000348,009
Other costs 26,98621,57518,468
Cash flow from operations (213,968)857,658632,157
Funding reserves 6,897,8556,759,7615,515,073
Note: Ci recognized endowment fund contributions in donations, increasing revenues by $202k in F2017, $103k in F2016 and $6k in F2015. Ci recognized endowment fund investment income, increasing revenues by $85k in F2017, $103k in F2016 and $85k in F2015. Ci reported unrealized investment income, affecting revenues by $207k in F2017, ($151k) in F2016 and $70k in F2015. To report on a cash basis, Ci adjusted for change in deferred contributions for capital assets, increasing revenues by $322k in F2017. Ci also adjusted for changes in deferred contributions in donations, affecting revenues by ($1.1m) in F2017, $663k in F2016 and $417k in F2015. Ci reported endowment fund investment management fees in other costs, increasing expenses by $27k in F2017, $22k in F2016 and $18k in F2015. Ci used the charity’s T3010 CRA filing for F2016 and F2015 government funding figures and backed the amounts out of donations. The F2017 T3010 CRA filing was not available when this profile was updated.

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