P.O. Box 85058, Albert Park PO
Calgary, AB T2A 7R7
Executive Director: Leslie Hill
Board Chair: Doris Hall

Charitable Reg. #:11882 3483 RR0001


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

[Charity Rating: 5/5]



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) 85 cents are available for programs.

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About Discovery House:

Discovery House is a 5-star rated charity with an A+ grade in results reporting. The charity has best practices in financial transparency and reasonable overhead costs.

Founded in 1980, Discovery House helps women and children escape domestic violence and live safely in Calgary. The charity reports that 100% of women at Discovery House have experienced emotional or psychological abuse, 88% have experienced physical abuse, and 54% have experienced financial abuse. Discovery House operates four main programs: shelter and outreach, community housing, child and youth programs, and counselling. 

A Charity Intelligence 2023 Top 100 Rated Charity

Discovery House's shelter accounted for 35% of program spending in F2023. The second-stage shelter provides long-term support (up to one year) for families lacking a safe housing environment. In F2023, the charity's 19-unit shelter served 125 people, including 95 children. Of the women who accessed the shelter program in F2023, 96% were at increased, severe, or extreme risk of being killed by an abusive partner, with 52% being at extreme risk. Discovery House reports that the average stay in the shelter was 11 months in F2023. 

The charity's community housing program comprised 35% of program spending in F2023. The program supports families to find safe and affordable housing around Calgary. Discovery House reports that it served 105 families in F2023. It also reports that its community housing program team spent 5,583 hours through one-on-one meetings, liaising with landlords, resource referrals, and connections to the community. 

Child and youth programs accounted for 22% of Discovery House's program spending in F2023. Through this program, the charity works with parents and children to mitigate the effects of trauma on brain development and strengthen parenting skills. The charity provides children and youth with one-on-one counselling and case management. In F2023, Discovery House supported 140 children and youth and 94 caregivers through these programs. 

Counselling programs made up 7% of program spending in F2023. Discovery House provides one-on-one counselling and group programs for mothers and children, designed to understand the impacts of domestic violence, increase self-esteem, improve communication skills, and address the experience of trauma. In F2023, the charity served 145 clients, including 63 children and youth. 

The remaining 1% of program spending was allocated to Discovery House's bursary program.

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Results and Impact

In F2023, 18 families left Discovery House's shelter, with 94% meeting their goals and increasing their safety. Additionally, 36 families left Discovery House's community housing program with a 90% satisfaction rate in F2023. 


Discovery House used its My Star tool to measure the feelings of its young clients. The charity reports that it completed 45 assessments and discovered that all clients maintained or improved their feelings regarding safety, confidence, self-esteem, learning, friendships, and physical health. 

Discovery House reports that of the women who participated in its counselling program in F2023, 64% reported an improvement in depression symptoms, 71% reported an improvement in feelings of anxiety, and 50% reported a stress reduction.  


While Ci highlights these key results, they may not be a complete representation of Discovery House's results and impact.


This charity is not yet rated on impact (n/r). 

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Discovery House received $3.0m in donations and special events revenue in F2023. It also received $1.6m in government funding, representing 33% of total revenues. 


Administrative costs are 4% of revenues (less investment income), and fundraising costs are 10% of donations and special events revenue. This results in total overhead spending of 15%. For every dollar donated, 85 cents go to the cause, which is within Ci's reasonable range for overhead spending. In F2022 and F2021, Ci reported administrative and fundraising costs from the charity's T3010 filings with the CRA, which have been greater than the amounts reported in Discovery House's audited financial statements. The F2023 T3010 filing is not available at the time of this report. As a result, F2023 overhead spending may be understated.


Discovery House has $4.7m in reserve funds, of which $1.0m is donor endowed. Excluding donor-endowed funds, Discovery House could cover 93% or over 11 months of its annual program costs. 


Updated on July 7, 2023, by Sydney Olexa. 

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending March
Administrative costs as % of revenues 4.3%15.7%15.8%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 10.3%13.0%13.6%
Total overhead spending 14.6%28.7%29.4%
Program cost coverage (%) 93.4%105.1%94.1%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $s
Donations 2,903,2743,141,0232,580,609
Goods in kind 011,69226,452
Government funding 1,632,5441,728,9431,868,373
Fees for service 0279,460339,645
Business activities (net) 182,675154,411205,639
Special events 111,47068,450147,459
Investment income 62,630(1,909)24,793
Other income 2,75968,042104,574
Total revenues 4,895,3525,450,1125,297,544
Program costs 4,061,3673,653,6093,510,205
Administrative costs 206,559856,783834,402
Fundraising costs 311,600416,755370,073
Total spending 4,579,5264,927,1474,714,680
Cash flow from operations 315,826522,965582,864
Capital spending 113,222187,120186,962
Funding reserves 4,746,4644,786,4974,400,508

Note: Ci adjusted for goods in kind reported in the charity's audited financials affecting revenue by $nil in F2023, $12k in F2022, and $26k in F2021. Ci removed unrealized investment loss from expenses and included it in investment income, decreasing revenue and expenses by $14k in F2023, $32k in F2022, and $nil in F2021. Ci reported salaries associated with fundraising from the charity's financial notes as fundraising costs and removed the amounts from program costs. Ci typically reports lotteries and business activities net of expenses. However, Ci reported gaming and facilities revenues (gross of expenses) in business activities based on information available from the charity's financial statements. Ci reported F2022 and F2021 administrative costs, fundraising costs, and government funding from the charity's T3010 filings with the CRA. The charity's F2023 T3010 was not available at the time of this update.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 63

Avg. compensation: $51,985

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 F2022

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

No comments have been added by the charity.

Charity Contact

Website: www.discoveryhouse.ca
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 403-670-0467


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Charitable Registration Number: 80340 7956 RR0001