Brain Canada

1200 McGill College Avenue, Suite 1600
Montreal, QC H3B 4G7
President & CEO: Inez Jabalpurwala
Board Chair: Naomi Azrieli

Charitable Reg. #:89105 2094 RR0001


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

[Charity Rating: 4/5]



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) 95 cents are available for programs.

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About Brain Canada:

Founded in 1997, Brain Canada Foundation (Brain Canada) funds medical research that is related to a variety of different diseases, disorders and injuries of the brain. It takes a One Brain, One Community approach as it recognizes there needs to be greater collaboration across disciplines and institutions in brain research. The foundation notes that brain disorders are the leading cause of disability in Canada, directly impacting 1 in 3 Canadians. It also states that the burden on the Canadian economy every year is more than the cost of cancer and cardiovascular disease combined. Brain Canada’s head office is in Montreal.

In 2011, Brain Canada established the Canada Brain Research Fund (CBRF) in partnership with Health Canada. The Government of Canada committed to matching every $1 raised by Brain Canada from private and non-governmental sources between 2011 to 2017 up to $100 million. The foundation met this fundraising objective by 2015. In 2016, the Government of Canada provided an additional $20 million in matching funds up until 2020. This brought the total of the Canada Brain Research Fund to $240 million.

Brain Canada spent approximately $23m on team grants (53% of total grants) in F2017. The purpose of these grants is to allow researchers from a range of disciplines, such as engineering, computer sciences and chemistry, to work together. Since establishing the Canada Brain Research Fund in 2011, the foundation had awarded $113 million of team grants to 100 projects.

The foundation spent approximately $14m on platform support grants (33% of total grants) in F2017. The platform support grant program was developed in consultation with the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI). The foundation recognizes that high-impact research requires access to shared equipment, facilities, services and databases. In February 2018, the Government of Canada and Brain Canada announce a $10 million grant to establish the Canadian Open Neuroscience Platform (CONP). This platform is in partnership with 15 Canadian universities that will help researchers share data more widely and efficiently. Since starting its partnership with Health Canada, Brain Canada has awarded $69 million of platform support grants to 42 projects.

Brain Canada spent approximately $6m on capacity building grants (13% of total grants) in F2017. The foundation understands the importance of supporting and developing the next generation of researchers. These grants are awarded to graduate students, postdoctoral fellows and early career researchers who are contributing to brain research in Canada. As of March 2018, the foundation has awarded $27m of capacity building grants to 81 projects.

The foundation spent approximately $0.4m on knowledge translation grants (1% of total grants) in F2017. These grants help transfer knowledge generated by research into applications that can deliver benefits to Canadians.

Results and Impact: In Brain Canada’s 2017 annual report, it reports that over the past 20 years, its funded researchers have published 764 articles in scientific journals which have been cited 14,500 times.

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Brain Canada is one of Canada’s largest charities, a Major 100, with donations of $23m in F2017, a 31% increase compared to F2015. The charity also received $28m in government funding in F2017 from the Minister of Health. The foundation granted $43m in F2017, a 39% increase compared to F2015. It has committed to grant another $68m to research institutions across Canada over the next 5 years.

Brain Canada does not report its administrative and fundraising costs separately in its audited financial statements. Administration and fundraising costs are 6% of total revenues. For every dollar donated to the foundation, $0.94 goes towards its grants, which falls within Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending. Brain Canada has total funding reserves of $30m which can cover 8 months of annual grants, indicating a need for donations.

This is a new charity report that has been sent to Brain Canada Foundation for review. Comments and edits may be forthcoming.

Created on August 23, 2018 by Derek Houlberg.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending December
Fundraising & admin costs as % of revenues 5.4%7.0%10.8%
Program cost coverage (%) 68.5%69.1%82.0%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $000s
Donations 22,63819,71217,337
Government funding 27,65517,3376,181
Investment income 269193326
Total revenues 50,56237,24323,844
Grants 43,13035,78831,135
Fundraising & administrative costs 2,7112,5902,533
Cash flow from operations 4,721(1,135)(9,824)
Funding reserves 29,53624,74325,524

Note: Ci reports donations on a cash basis rather than using the deferral method, affecting total donations by $4.7m in F2017, ($1.2m) in F2016 and ($9.9m) in F2015. Ci included partner funds sent directly to research institutions in donations and grants, increasing total revenue and expenses by $603k in F2017.

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 9

Avg. Compensation: $114,958

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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