WE Charity

339 Queen St E
Toronto, ON M5A 1S9
Executive Director: Scott Baker
Board Chair: Michelle Douglas

Website: www.wecharity.org
Charitable Reg. #: 88657 8095 RR0001
Sector: International Aid
Operating Charity

Charity Rating

[Charity Rating: 4/4]

Results Reporting

Grade: B+

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

2015 2016 2017
For a dollar donated, cents funding the cause after fundraising and admin costs, excluding surplus.

Full-time staff #364

Avg. Compensation $34,936

Top 10 Staff Salary Range

$350k + 0
$300k - $350k 0
$250k - $300k 0
$200k - $250k 0
$160k - $200k 0
$120k - $160k 2
$80k - $120k 8
$40k - $80k 0
< $40k 0
Information from most recent CRA Charities Directorate filings for F2017

About WE Charity:

WE Charity, formerly known as Free the Children, was founded in 1995 by brothers Craig and Marc Kielburger. It aims to empower change to create sustainable impact. WE Charity has domestic programs, which include WE Schools and WE Day, and an international WE Villages program. WE Schools is a year-long program that helps students understand social issues and provides them with tools so that they can give back to the community, and WE Day is an event with well-known speakers, including celebrities, to motivate students to take action. WE Villages aims to create sustainable community development in areas with prevalent child labour, child exploitation, and gender inequality. ME to WE is an affiliated social enterprise that donated $1.5m to WE Charity in 2017 and $1.1m in 2016.

In 2017, domestic programs were 63% of program costs (up from 58% in 2015), and included WE Day and We Schools programs in Canada, USA, Trinidad and Tobago, and the UK. WE Charity reports in its 2017 annual report that it engages over 3.8 million youth in 16,000 schools and groups in North America and the UK. Students track their community involvement through WE Schools or on the WE Day app; then, the charity extends WE Day tickets to selected students. In the 2017-2018 school year, the charity hosted 19 WE Days, one of which was its first WE Day in partnership with the United Nations and three UN agencies. During that period, 233,532 youth from 11,802 schools attended and 26,534 speakers hosted the WE Day events.

International programs made up 37% of program costs in 2017. In Kenya in May 2017, WE Charity reports the first surgery performed at the Baraka Hospital’s new surgical wing. WE Charity’s international program, known as WE Villages, focuses on education, water, health, food, and opportunity. The charity’s audited financial statements state that in 2017, $9.7m was provided to non-profit organizations outside of Canada to help run WE Villages. WE Villages runs in Nicaragua, Ecuador, Haiti, rural China, Kenya, Sierra Leone, India, Tanzania, and as of 2017, also Ethiopia. The charity builds schools and provides school supplies, training for teachers, and extracurricular school activities in its education program. Its water program provides communities with clean water, sanitation facilities for washing, infrastructure for food production, and hygiene workshops. The health program works with community partners to improve health care access, provide training to doctors, and educate communities on disease prevention. WE Charity works with Nutrien in its food program to help communities implement agriculture and food security programs; the charity reports in its 2017 annual report that it is teaching new agricultural techniques to over 100 farmers in China. The opportunity program provides training and support to improve women’s income-generating skills; in Ecuador, women took out 13 loans, at a total value of $8,500 USD, for their group projects.

WE Charity opened its WE Global Learning Center in September 2017 – an international hub for service-learning and youth engagement, and the site of WE Charity’s new headquarters. Since F2015, the charity has invested $24.6m in the property.

Results and Impact: During the 2016-2017 school year, youth in WE Schools supported 7,221 organizations, collected 2,555,483 pounds of food, raised $24.2m, and volunteered for 8,837,826 hours. A survey on Canadian and American teachers in the program showed that 92% of teachers report that their students feel a stronger connection to their local community and 89% report that their students are more likely to stand up for others who are discriminated against. In its international programs, the charity reports that the borehole it constructed in Kenya will annually save community members 9,000 hours previously spent collecting water.

Financial Review:

WE Charity is a Major 100 charity, with Canadian donations of $31.4m in 2017. There was no allocation of revenues between Canadian and international donations in the financial statements, so the charity’s CRA T3010 filings were best interpreted to reflect this split.  Its administrative costs were 6% of revenues and its fundraising costs were 8% of donations. For every dollar donated to the charity, 86 cents go to the cause, falling within Charity Intelligence’s reasonable range for overhead spending. WE Charity’s funding reserves are ($3.0m) due to interest-bearing debts of $12.9m exceeding the value of its liquid assets.

This charity report is an update that has been sent to WE Charity. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on August 22, 2018 by Joeyanne Cheung.

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending December
Administrative costs as % of revenues 6.2%7.4%7.1%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 7.7%5.8%3.4%
Program cost coverage (%) (5.7%)(9.5%)(15.7%)

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 31,39629,98224,486
Goods in kind 4,8291,6452,465
Government funding 2,9882,1001,620
Investment income 72397300
Other income 25,05817,58314,386
Total revenues 64,99451,40743,258
Program costs - International 19,57619,43115,605
Program costs - Canada 33,99724,79921,291
Administrative costs 3,9963,7693,061
Fundraising costs 2,4311,726833
Other costs (562)(672)(421)
Cash flow from operations 5,5562,3542,889
Funding reserves (3,039)(4,210)(5,805)
Note: Ci used WE Charity’s T3010 figures to report Canadian donations. All non-government and non-Canadian donation revenues are included in other income. 2017 CRA information was provided directly from the charity, as the information was not uploaded on the CRA website at the time the report was written. The charity reports values on its T3010 for international donations, but the T3010 total revenues figures do not account for $310k in 2017, $133k in 2016, and ($394k) in 2015 as reported on its audited financial statements. International donations, as best interpreted by the charity’s T3010 filings, were included in other revenues. Ci included dividend and interest income and unrealized gain on marketable securities in investment income, increasing revenues by $723k in 2017, $97k in 2016, and $300k in 2015. Ci included gain on foreign exchange in other revenue, affecting revenues by ($309k) in 2017, $90k in 2016, and $373k in 2015. Ci backed out fundraising allocations in domestic and international program costs and reverted them back into fundraising costs. Ci included interest expense and share of loss from We365 LP in other expenses, increasing expenses by $725k in 2017, $320k in 2016, and $86k in 2015.

Comments added by the Charity:

Welcome to WE Charity.

WE Charity is the charitable division of WE: a movement that brings people together and gives them the tools to change the world.

WE Charity empowers change with resources that create sustainable impact. We do this through domestic programs like WE Schools and internationally through WE Villages. Our WE Schools program is active in over 12,000 schools in the United States, Canada and the UK, engaging over 2.4 million students in service learning. Our WE Villages program is active in 9 developing countries, creating a sustainable model of international development. WE Villages has already provided high quality education to over 200,000 children while helping families break the cycle of poverty at the same time.

And of course we'll continue to celebrate all great change-makers at WE Day. These are powerful, life-changing experiences with world-renowned speakers and performers, mixed with real inspirational stories of change. This year alone over 200,000 young people will come together in 14 stadiums across Canada, the U.S. and the U.K. Plus, millions tune in to our live televised broadcasts.

Our reach continues to scale as we build a truly global movement for civic action, global citizenship, and social change. The Board of Directors consists of high-level professionals, most of whom have sat on multiple Boards during their prestigious careers, and has been highly engaged with our incredible team of dedicated staff. They ensure that our governance is of the highest caliber and integrity and that all of the necessary systems are in place for the sustainable growth and impact of our organization.

We are grateful for all of the passion and constant encouragement from our supporters, as we continue to grow our international and domestic programs to new heights.

Without you there would be no WE.
We invite you to come along on this journey with us.

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