Calgary Women's Emergency Shelter

500-1509 Centre St SW
Calgary, AB T2G 2E6
CEO: Kim Ruse
Board President: Shelly Norris

Charitable Reg. #:12988 3443 RR0001


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

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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) 86 cents are available for programs.

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About Calgary Women's Emergency Shelter:

Founded in 1974, Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter (CWES) works to end family violence and abuse. It states that half of all women will experience an incident of physical or sexual violence, and the Calgary Police Service responds to 20,000 domestic violence calls each year. Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter offers programs to help women and their families prevent, escape, or recover from abuse. In F2020, CWES states that it helped more than 15,000 clients through its shelter and programs.

Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter’s three largest programs are its Emergency Shelter, Community Services Counselling and Outreach, and Healthy Relationships.

Emergency Shelter services made up 46% of program costs in F2020. CWES offers a 50-bed facility to house women and children escaping abuse. Shelter clients receive food, clothing, counselling, and support with long-term housing searches. The shelter housed 320 women and 386 children in F2020, compared to 471 women and 457 children in F2019. Based on the charity’s reported spending on shelter programs, it cost $5,760 to house one client in F2020. This is up 32% from $4,357 per client in the previous year.

Community Services Counselling and Outreach made up 23% of program costs in F2020. These services help women who are unable to or choose not to enter the Emergency Shelter. CWES states that it serves over 90% of its clients through community services outside of its shelter. The charity provides counsellors to offer parenting support, safety planning, and other resources. In F2020, Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter reached 600 women and 640 children through counselling services

Healthy Relationships programs were 10% of program costs in F2020. The program targets adolescents aged 12 to 21. CWES provides group counselling sessions for young clients to discuss issues relating to family violence, unhealthy relationships, and abusive behaviour. The program relies on referrals by teachers and school guidance counsellors. In F2020, 410 clients participated in Healthy Relationships programs.

The remaining 21% of program spending included Men’s Counselling, Child and Family Support, Take-A-Stand Workshops, and Volunteer Programs. The charity’s 24-Hour Family Violence Helpline represented less than 1% of program spending in F2020. The service requires minimal spending but helps many clients. In F2020, CWES received 10,459 calls for an average of 29 calls per day.

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Results and Impact

Charity Intelligence has given Calgary Women's Emergency Shelter a Low impact rating based on demonstrated impact per dollar spent.

Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter surveys its clients in each program to assess their needs. In F2020, CWES reports that 98% of women who accessed the Emergency Shelter found their immediate needs met. An additional 98% of women served through counselling programs said they gained knowledge on how to keep themselves safe. Among participants in Healthy Relationships programs, 96% were able to identify support networks they could now go to for help.

While Ci highlights these key results, they may not be a complete representation of Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter’s results and impact.

Impact Rating: Low

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Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter is a Large charity, with donations and special events revenues of $5.9m in F2020. Administrative costs are 5% of revenues (less investment income) and fundraising costs are 9% of donations and special events revenue. This results in total overhead spending of 14%. For every dollar donated to the charity, 86 cents go to the cause. This falls within Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending.

Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter has $2.1m in total funding reserves, resulting in a program cost coverage ratio of 27%. This means that CWES could cover three months of annual program costs with its existing funding reserves.

This charity report is an update that has been sent to Calgary Women’s Emergency Shelter for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on July 31, 2020 by Eric Zhao.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending March
Administrative costs as % of revenues 4.7%4.7%5.4%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 9.0%10.9%10.1%
Total overhead spending 13.7%15.6%15.5%
Program cost coverage (%) 26.5%21.7%31.1%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 4,4123,3433,625
Government funding 3,3783,3593,378
Special events 1,4401,5061,321
Investment income 262919
Other income 91111
Total revenues 9,2658,2488,352
Program costs 7,8327,6867,069
Administrative costs 432389450
Fundraising costs 527528499
Other costs 525559
Total spending 8,8448,6578,077
Cash flow from operations 421(409)275
Capital spending 53258272
Funding reserves 2,0761,6702,201

Note: Ci excluded amortization of deferred capital contributions, affecting total revenues by ($214k) in F2020, ($147k) in F2019, and ($122k) in 2018. Ci reported fundraising costs from the charity’s financial notes and removed the amounts from program costs.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 72

Avg. Compensation: $59,546

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 F2019

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

The comment below was added to a previous profile update. New comments may be forthcoming.

The Family Violence Helpline (403.234.7233) is often the first contact for people reaching out for support. Our Helpline counsellors answer the phone 24 hours per day, 365 days a year. They provide counselling, safety planning, referrals and information in multiple languages.


Charity Contact

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 403-290-1552