Women in Need Society of Calgary

#1, 3525 26th Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2B 2M9
CEO: Karen Ramchuk
Board Chair: Doris Hall

Charitable Reg. #:13518 5411 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) 62 cents are available for programs.

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About Women in Need Society of Calgary:

Founded in 1992, Women in Need Society of Calgary (WINS) supports women and families in need with clothing, home items, and referrals to other social services. The society operates four thrift stores which collect and sell donated clothes, jewelry, furniture, household items, and sporting equipment. In F2016, WINS reports that 200,000 people shopped at its thrift stores. Revenue from the stores is used to support the society’s programs: Free Goods Referral, Employment Program, and Family Resource Centres.  

The Free Goods Referral program operates at each of the thrift store locations. After being referred by another local agency, women can access goods at WINS’s thrift stores for free. In F2016, WINS reports giving $504,584 worth of goods to women who were escaping abuse, new to Canada, transitioning to housing from homelessness, or otherwise struggling financially. Over 3,500 thrift store customers were women accessing goods for free. WINS provides delivery for larger items, serving 1,900 Free Goods Referral program clients in F2016.

The Employment Program runs at the thrift stores and through WINS’s distribution centre. Women struggling to find employment are provided with a job and job training. This work helps women to support their families in the short run and has a lasting, positive effect on their employability.

Women in Need Society of Calgary operates Family Resource Centres, providing one-on-one guidance, and programs to support women. WINS connects people with community resources and support groups. Women can also access computers or classes on parenting and English. The charity reports providing programs 16,280 times through the Family Resource Centres in F2016. This represents a 168% increase from 6,064 programs offered in F2014.

In March 2018, WINS closed its four Family Resource Centres, citing an increase in service demands while donations declined. The charity sought $500,000 in donations to reopen the centres. Three of the centres have since reopened after receiving $250,000 in grants from the Alberta government and over $85,000 from private donations and community grants.

Results and Impact: Through the thrift stores, Women in Need Society of Calgary diverted 778,073 lbs of clothing and goods from landfills in F2017.

WINS received money from “recycling” second-hand clothes, also known as selling them to rag traders. This practice typically involves large quantities of unsellable used clothing being shipped to poor areas including India and Kenya. Charity Intelligence has found that this practice is disastrous to local textile industries with harmful economic and environmental consequences.  

My anchor


Women in Need Society of Calgary is a small charity, with donations of $324k in F2017. Donations have declined by 63% from $875k in F2015, excluding donated goods-in-kind. WINS has not disclosed the value of goods-in-kind donations received in F2017 and F2016. The charity received $3.6m in net revenue from business activities including the thrift stores and recycling, representing 88% of total revenues.

WINS’s administrative costs are 5% of revenues and fundraising costs are 33% of donations. The fundraising ratio has increased from 10% in F2015, more due to declining donations than increasing fundraising costs. The society has $724k in funding reserves which could cover program costs for two months. This indicates a need for funding.

This charity report is an update that has been sent to Women in Need Society for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on August 13, 2018 by Madison Kerr.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending December
Administrative costs as % of revenues 5.3%4.8%4.7%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 32.8%21.4%9.8%
Program cost coverage (%) 17.3%35.5%33.9%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $s
Donations 323,884351,547874,502
Goods in kind 00155,635
Government funding 121,87587,5000
Fees for service 14,23512,24011,586
Business activities (net) 3,563,9503,443,4423,249,763
Investment income 11,22614,08214,763
Other income 04,9331,283
Total revenues 4,035,1703,913,7444,307,532
Program costs 4,175,0923,668,4033,887,238
Administrative costs 211,070187,519201,530
Fundraising costs 106,15875,23485,589
Other costs 35,54229,47731,371
Cash flow from operations (492,692)(46,889)101,804
Funding reserves 723,6311,300,8241,318,366

Note: Ci has adjusted amortization of deferred capital contributions, affecting revenues by ($30k) in F2017, ($31k) in F2016, and ($45k) in F2015. Thrift store activities are included as net in business activities, affecting revenues and expenses by ($285k) in F2017, ($219k) in F2016, and ($229k) in F2015. Ci has used information for F2016 as stated on the charity’s F2017 statements. F2016 expenses have been adjusted by ($1,602) due to a typing error on the financial statements.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 59

Avg. Compensation $42,742

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 F2016

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Comments & Contact

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Charity Contact

Website: www.womeninneed.net
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