Terry Fox Foundation

150-8960 University High Street
Burnaby, BC V5A 4Y6
Executive Director: Britt Andersen
Board Chair: Bill Pristanski

Charitable Reg. #:10809 9979 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) 72 cents are available for programs.

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About Terry Fox Foundation:

Terry Fox Foundation (TFF) formed after Terry Fox’s Marathon of Hope in 1980. Terry Fox was diagnosed with bone cancer in 1977 and ran 5,373 km across Canada to raise awareness and money for cancer research. He died in 1981 after cancer spread to his lungs. TFF’s mission is to realize Terry’s vision of a world without cancer by funding cancer research.

Terry Fox Research Institute (TFRI) is the research arm of Terry Fox Foundation. It was created in 2007 and is TFF’s primary funding recipient. In 2009, TFRI assumed responsibility for overseeing all TFF cancer research programs. The Institute funds translational research, which focuses on speeding up the development of new treatments and technologies (based on clinical discoveries) for cancer patients. Translational research is commonly called “lab bench to bedside” research. TFRI also funds basic biomedical research focused on discovering potential cures for different cancers, provides funding to new research investigators, and trains new researchers who are starting their cancer research careers.

Terry Fox Foundation distributed $24.5 million in cash grants for cancer research in F2018. This includes $23.1 million in recognized grants and $506k in deferred grants to TFRI. Total cash grants to TFRI were $23.6 million (97% of mission spending). TFF and TFRI’s joint F2018 annual report states that 52 research projects and 361 researchers were funded during the year. This is down from 57 projects and 405 researchers funded in F2017. The Institute reported spending $22.1 million on research in F2018: 64% on discovery project grants, 26% on translational cancer research programs, 7% on new investigator awards, and 3% on training and program development.

The remaining $843k of grants went to international cancer research projects (3% of mission spending), which funded 17 programs in 33 countries during the year (38 programs in 30 countries in F2017).

TFF plans to launch the Marathon of Hope Cancer Centers Network in F2019. The Network is a Canada-wide precision medicine project that connects research institutes with hospitals to improve platforms, harmonize research methods and strengthen infrastructure for precision medicine in the country. TFF ran two Marathon of Hope pilots in F2018. The Terry Fox Canadian Comprehensive Cancer Centre Network, which connects TFRI with Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and BC Cancer-Vancouver, and Montreal Cancer Consortium, which connects eight research centers, hospitals and universities in Montreal.

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Results and Impact

Researchers at Dalhousie University, partially funded by TFRI, discovered that deletion of Interleukin-17 receptor (IL-17R), which regulates inflammation, may help doctors predict aggressiveness of colorectal cancer in patients, making it a potential prognostic tool and target for immunotherapies. The findings, which were published in International Journal of Cancer in February 2019, showed that IL-17R deletion was present in over 50% of advanced colorectal cancer patients and these patients had worse survival rates than people without the deletion.

Researchers at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre studying MYC, a regulatory gene that is mutated in over 50% of human cancers and associated with poor prognosis, discovered that its interaction with G9a (a regulatory protein) is a key driver behind cancer development. The research team used a new technology called BioID to discover 350 proteins that MYC interacts with during cancer development, including G9a. These proteins represent potential targets for anti-cancer drugs. There was very little understanding of how MYC worked prior to this discovery, which was published in November 2018 in Cancer Cell journal.

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Terry Fox Foundation is a Major 100, meaning it is one of Canada’s largest charities in terms of donations. It collected $22.5m in Canadian donations in F2018, and an additional $1.1m in international donations. Administrative costs are 8% of revenues (excluding investment income) and fundraising costs are 20% of Canadian donations. Per dollar donated to TFF, 72 cents go to the cause, which is within Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending.

TFF holds just under $71.0m in investments, of which 64% is held in Canadian and foreign equities, 35% is in bonds, and 1% is in term deposits and GICs. With total investment income of $2.5m, TFF earned a 3.6% return in F2018 (7.2% in F2017). When cash and cash equivalents are included, the Foundation’s ROI comes to 3.0% in F2018 (5.8% in F2017).

TFF’s funding reserves of $81.8m can cover granting activities for 3.3 years at the F2018 level. Its audited financial statements report grant commitments of $56.7m over the next five years (F2019 to F2023), of which $1.0m is for international cancer research organizations and $55.6m is for Terry Fox Research Institute. A further breakdown of TFRI commitments is as follows: $22.7m in F2019, $15.4m in F2020, $10.7m in F2021, $5.5m in F2022, and $1.4m in F2023.

Salary information presented in this report is only as recent as F2017 because the charity’s F2018 T3010 filing with the CRA does not report the number of full-time staff for the year.

This charity report is an update that has been sent to Terry Fox Foundation for review. Comments and edits may be forthcoming.

Profile updated on August 23, 2019 by Katie Khodawandi. Results Reporting grade updated on January 6, 2020 by Katie Khodawandi. 

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending March
Administrative costs as % of revenues 8.2%8.4%8.9%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 19.6%15.7%15.6%
Total overhead spending 27.8%24.1%24.4%
Program cost coverage (%) 334.0%375.3%362.2%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 22,53021,92120,290
International donations 1,1431,2431,352
Government funding 713730
Business activities (net) 187202111
Investment income 2,4905,6651,360
Total revenues 26,42229,06923,143
Grants 24,48623,03223,702
Administrative costs 1,9621,9641,934
Fundraising costs 4,4163,4363,157
Total spending 30,86428,43228,793
Cash flow from operations (4,443)637(5,650)
Capital spending 2731213
Funding reserves 81,78786,43285,841

Note: Sale of merchandise is reported net of cost of merchandise sold in business activities, reducing revenues and expenses by $660k in F2018, $505k in F2017 and $701k in F2016. Ci adjusted grants for changes in amounts due to Terry Fox Research Institute, affecting expenses by $506k in F2018, ($549k) in F2017, and ($21k) in F2016. Amortization of capital assets is backed out of administrative and fundraising costs.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 39

Avg. Compensation: $61,161

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 F2017

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Comments & Contact

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Charity Contact

Website: www.terryfox.org
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 1-888-836-9786