2019 Top 100 Rated Charities

2019 Top 100 Rated Charities

Charity Intelligence’s Top 100 Rated Charities is a list of outstanding charities you can support with confidence this giving season. This list has the 100 charities with the highest point totals based on our rating methodology on 750 charities.

These Top 100 charities:  

  • are leaders in reporting to donors, a good sign of accountability,
  • are cost efficient with overhead spending averaging 20%, compared to an average of 26% for all charities we analyse,
  • need support - none have more than three years of funding reserves,
  • are financially transparent – well, 99% are.[i]

In addition, 32 of these 100 charities have been rated for impact, all providing demonstrated social impact greater than 2:1.

New tool for you to give

Each Canadian has unique giving interests. Some donors support local charities, some support international charities. Some prefer giving to smaller charities.

With this interactive excel table, click on the column that matches your giving interest, and filter to your heart’s content. You can sort the list of charities by city, by province, by sector, by size, by overhead spending, etc. The choice is yours.

When you want more information, click on the charity name. This is linked to Charity Intelligence’s most recent report on the charity. 

View the 2019 Top 100 Rated Charities here in an interactive table you can sort and filter.

Please note: These scores and ratings are as at September 30, 2019 based on Charity Intelligence's most recent analysis. Fiscal years vary. Charity ratings are dynamic and are subject to change as charities improve their transparency, accountability, cost-efficiency and program spending.


We are trying to make this list easier for you to filter by. In the meantime, to sort this list by your giving priorities:

1. Click anywhere in the blue heading area

2. Click Data in the top menu headings

3. Choose Filter Views

4. Choose Create New Temporary Filter View

This allows you to sort the list. To the right of each column title (like sector, donations, etc.) is a small upside-down triangle. Click on this to sort each filter by your preference. 

Alternatively, here is the 2019 Top 100 Rated Charities list in a pdf. 


Key Findings in 2019


Excellence comes in all sizes. On this 2019 Top 100 list, 12 charities are “small”.  We define any charity receiving less than $1 million in donations as “small”. The smallest charity on the 2019 Top 100 list is East York Learning Experience in Toronto that received $37,000 in donations. At the other end of the spectrum are eight charities each receiving over $100 million annually in donations, topped by University of British Columbia (UBC) that received $208 million in donations.

Charity Intelligence has reports on approximately 185 “small” Canadian charities, approximately 25% of our charity reports. We continue to find outstanding giving opportunities in these less-known charities.

New charities. Also new in 2019 are 24 charities making their first appearance on the Top 100 list.

Better donor reporting than ever before. This year, some charities have made exceptional efforts to provide excellent annual reports to donors on what they do, who they help, and the results they achieve.

For example, Greater Vancouver Food Bank’s donor reporting grade improved 57% to an A grade.

When I joined the food bank, this was one of my goals. We are proud of the progress …. We really wanted an A+, and will certainly try for that next time.

Cynthia Boulter, Chief Development Officer, Greater Vancouver Foodbank.

Congratulations to all these charities for making tremendous strides in reporting. In 2019, 15 charities logged +50% improvements in their results reporting. We salute these Canadian leaders in results reporting.

Access to information is essential in intelligent giving. For years, Canadian donors who took the time to do their homework and read reports on a charity’s website found that the key information just wasn’t there. On average, British and Australian charities post more informative reports. While Canadian charities are improving, there is still a material lag in Canadian disclosure. We believe Canadian donors deserve nothing less than the best. On this 2019 Top 100 Rated Charities, 45 charities are reporting at world-class levels. 

Charity Intelligence’s Top 100 Rated Charities is one of our most popular annual reports. In the last year, this list received 30,580 page visits, 2.1% of our website's page views.

Many Canadians also review Charity Intelligence’s list of 4-Star Charities

From this short-list of Top 100 Rated Charities, Charity Intelligence is preparing its lists of Top 10 Impact Charities that we will release in early November 2019. This is Canadian donors' favourite post on our website.


If you find Charity Intelligence’s research useful in your giving, please consider donating to support our workBeing entirely funded by donors like you maintains our independence and objectivity to help Canadians be informed in their giving. Canadians donate over $17 billion each year. This giving could achieve tremendous results. We hope Charity Intelligence's research helps Canadians give better.


About Charity Intelligence

Charity Intelligence’s website has reports on over 750 Canadian charities. These charities receive more than $9.7 billion in donations each year, representing an estimated 57% of total Canadian giving. Charity Intelligence’s reports give donors the facts and figures to answer their questions about how charities spend money and the results they achieve. 77% of donors say that reading a Charity Intelligence report increased their confidence in giving and, with greater confidence, they gave 32% more money.

In 2016, Statistics Canada reported that nearly a third of Canadians weren’t giving as much to charities as they could because they had unanswered questions. We hope that by answering donors’ questions with independent reports, we can help Canadian donors give intelligently.

At the same time, some Canadian charities are striving to improve their star ratings. These charities are becoming more transparent and accountable. This makes Canada’s charity sector better for all.



[i] Against Malaria Foundation is the lone exception lacking full financial transparency. Canadians still need to contact the charity to get the audited financials statements rather than having this public information easily accessible on its website. What an unnecessary bother in 2019. Against Malaria Foundation’s high demonstrated impact offsets its deficiency in financial transparency so its combined score makes the Top 100 list in 2019.


Legal disclaimer:

The information in this report was prepared by Charity Intelligence Canada and its independent analysts from publicly-available information. Charity Intelligence and its analysts have made endeavours to ensure that the data in this report is accurate and complete but accepts no liability.

The views and opinions expressed are to inform donors in matters of public interest. Views and opinions are not intended to malign any religion, ethnic group, organization, individual or anyone or anything. Any dispute arising from your use of this website or viewing the material hereon shall be governed by the laws of the Province of Ontario, without regard to any conflict of law provisions. 

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