Canadian Wildlife Federation

350 Michael Cowpland Drive
Kanata, ON K2M 2W1
President: Guy Vézina
CEO: Rick Bates

Charitable Reg. #:10686 8755 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) 63 cents are available for programs.

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About Canadian Wildlife Federation:

Founded in 1962, Canadian Wildlife Federation (CWF) works to conserve and inspire conservation of Canadian wildlife and land so people can use and enjoy it. CWF works with people, corporations, NGOs, and governments. CWF's mission is to ensure healthy wildlife populations for the use and enjoyment of Canadians, including education and support for outdoor recreational activities. CWF is a federation with its directors nationally representing provincial wildlife federations including Ontario Federation of Hunters and Anglers, BC Wildlife Federation, and others. CWF educates, researches and advocates for the conservation of Canadian wildlife and natural habitats and the wise use of Canada's natural resources. 

Canadian Wildlife Federation encourages living sustainably so future generations can enjoy the outdoors through hiking, fishing, and so much more. It works to foster this outdoor Canadian way of life. CWF uses science-based information when developing its policies and programs. CWF reports that it engaged over 670,000 people and reached about 3 million people in 2018.

Canadian Wildlife Federation breaks its conservation initiatives into four categories: endangered species & biodiversity, lakes & rivers, coasts & oceans, and forests & fields. In F2018, CWF’s programs to protect freshwater turtles produced 4,517 hatchlings. In F2018, the Love Your Lake shoreline program assessed 7,031 shoreline properties on 41 lakes in Ontario, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. This program helps landowners naturalize their shorelines. 

CWF’s education programs hope to inspire future generations to develop a passion for wildlife conservation. In F2017, over 13,600 people participated in CWF’s WILD Family Nature Club that provides social activities and tools for young families.  This outdoor program seeks to get kids outdoors more to reconnect kids with nature and tackle nature-deficit disorder. The charity’s WILD Migrations Program trains educators to become certified instructors of wildlife activities. Lastly, CWF’s public service announcements aired over 21,000 times throughout the year.

In The News:  In 2016, Canadian Wildlife Federation was featured in this Vancouver Sun article. There is no material financial connection between Canadian Wildlife Federation and provincial wildlife federations, namely donations to support one charity are not passed through to other charities. Each is a separate and distinct charity.

Canadian Wildlife Federation politically lobbies for greater protection for whales in the St. Lawrence supporting low-speed zones for vessels. 

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Results and Impact

Ci chose to highlight the following results.

CWF’s petition in 2016 calling for more research into harmful effects of plastic in oceans has resulted in the federal government banning most toiletries with plastic microbeads. CWF’s saving turtles at risk today program researched areas where turtles are at the highest risk of being hit by vehicles. The findings resulted in 35 km2 of wetlands becoming protected.

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Charity Intelligence consolidated CWF with its associated Foundation in the following financial analysis. Transfers between the two charities are not reported as revenues or expenses.

Canadian Wildlife Federation is a large charity with total donations of $14.4m in F2018. Administrative costs are 5% of revenues and fundraising costs are 32% of donations. For every dollar donated to the charity, 63 cents go to the cause. This is outside Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending. CWF has funding reserves of $12.3m of which, $427k is donor-endowed. Excluding donor-endowed funds, the charity’s reserves can cover program costs for just over 7 months.

This charity report is an update that has been sent to Canadian Wildlife Federation for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on July 19, 2018 by Stefan Tetzlaff.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending February
Administrative costs as % of revenues 5.2%7.7%7.1%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 32.2%33.1%31.2%
Total overhead spending 37.4%40.8%38.3%
Program cost coverage (%) 62.1%83.9%77.1%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 14,40615,30015,538
Goods in kind 8,3482,3812,282
Government funding 1,325750758
Fees for service 1,5909011,107
Investment income 162235278
Other income 183203226
Total revenues 26,01419,77020,189
Program costs 19,05812,63712,293
Administrative costs 1,3331,5051,416
Fundraising costs 4,6385,0604,845
Total spending 25,02919,20218,554
Cash flow from operations 9855681,635
Capital spending 7236277
Funding reserves 12,25211,0249,898

Note: Ci removed amortization from administrative expenses reducing administrative expenses by $152k in F2018, $156k in F2017, and $147k in F2016. Ci removed gain on sale of tangible assets reducing total revenues by $105k in F2018.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 53

Avg. Compensation: $83,188

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 F2018

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