#100 - 2000 West 12th Avenue
Vancouver, BC V6J 2G2
Executive Director: Penny Lyons
Board Chair: Laura Spencer

Charitable Reg. #:13072 4941 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) 69 cents are available for programs.

My anchor


About SEVA Canada:

Founded in 1982, Seva Canada Society (Seva) works to prevent and reverse blindness in developing countries. An estimated 36 million people around the world are blind, and another 217 million have significant vision trouble. About 80% of blindness is preventable or treatable, including cataracts, which are the leading treatable cause. Seva treats vision issues by offering glasses, medicine, and surgery to those in need. In F2018, Seva-funded eye care programs helped 1,593,890 people. Cataract surgeries, specifically, were performed on 114,864 people. 

Seva operates in 13 countries: Benin, Burundi, Cambodia, Congo-Brazzaville, Egypt, Ethiopia, Guatemala, India, Madagascar, Malawi, Nepal, Tanzania, and Tibetan areas of China. Seva partners with people in remote areas to create and staff Community Eye Centres. Scholarships encourage local doctors to learn more about eyes, and staff are trained in modern surgery procedures such as those performed to treat glaucoma and cataracts. Most patients pay a small amount for surgery. The money collected allows the eye centres to provide free care to the poorest 10% of patients, and to operate self-sufficiently. The fees for service are not collected by Seva Canada because they are used by the individual eye centres in continued operations.  

Seva Canada Society recognizes that there is almost no difference in the rate that men and women go blind, but women are significantly less likely to access eye care. Among children with treatable blindness, two-thirds are girls. The charity’s initiative, Equal Right to Sight, works with local women’s groups to help the eye centres reach out to women. 

My anchor

Results and Impact

People with restored sight, including the 115,000 who received cataract surgeries this year, have restored dignity, productivity, and independence. Up to 75% of people with visual impairment need help from someone to complete everyday tasks. By allowing someone to see, Seva increases their own productivity, but also the productivity of those who were acting as caregivers. Children with restored sight can return to school and eventually work. Without these opportunities, they would be unable to escape poverty. 

Charity Intelligence has given Seva a Good impact rating based on demonstrated impact per dollar spent.

Impact Rating: Good

My anchor


Seva Canada Society is a medium-sized charity with donations and special events revenues of $1.4m in F2018. Administrative costs are 13% of total revenues and fundraising costs were 19% of donations. For every dollar donated, 68 cents go to Seva’s programs, which is within Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending. Seva has total funding reserves of $229k in F2018, for a program cost coverage ratio of 20%. This means that the charity’s reserves can cover annual program costs for about 2.5 months. 

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

Updated June 14, 2019 by Caroline McKenna. 

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending June
Administrative costs as % of revenues 12.8%10.1%7.5%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 18.7%15.0%12.5%
Total overhead spending 31.5%25.1%20.0%
Program cost coverage (%) 20.2%23.8%24.8%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $s
Donations 1,326,1391,461,8311,688,988
Goods in kind 45,8332,7461,243
Government funding 00191,358
Special events 61,18355,10845,025
Investment income 8,99510,43411,490
Total revenues 1,442,1501,530,1191,938,104
Program costs - International 1,135,7131,382,2281,603,522
Administrative costs 182,915152,991144,230
Fundraising costs 259,933228,017216,057
Total spending 1,578,5601,763,2401,963,810
Cash flow from operations (136,411)(233,117)(25,705)
Capital spending 3,1749,47313,490
Funding reserves 229,354329,085397,016

Note: Special events revenue includes net merchandise sale of greeting cards, t-shirts, and calendars that the charity sells online. Ci has reported revenues net of cost of goods sold, affecting revenues by ($1.3k) in F2018, ($5.6k) in F2017, and ($7.4k) in F2016. Ci has removed amortization from administrative and fundraising costs on a pro-rata basis. Program specific amortization was reported by the charity and removed from program costs. 

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 6

Avg. Compensation: $71,378

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 F2018

My anchor

Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

No comments have been added by charity

Charity Contact

Website: www.seva.ca
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.