Chalice again among Canada’s top charities
By Erin Morawetz
TORONTO (CCN) — For the third straight year, Chalice, a Catholic charity based in Nova Scotia, has been awarded an overall “A” rating by MoneySense magazine in its “Charity 100” list.
For Chalice marketing manager Sehne Connell, the rating means the world.
“We look forward to this magazine and we really hope that we continue
with our A rating,” Connell said. “It’s really, really
important to us because it confirms to our existing sponsors and donors
that they are part of an organization that can be trusted with their
It’s also an extra marketing boost that makes a difference
to this small charity, which relies primarily on word of mouth.
“It allows others to get to know who we are,” Connell said. “We
don’t spend a lot of money on . . . advertising. We rely on people
to spread the word and let others know about Chalice.”
Connell said the main reason Chalice is so tight with its
advertising budget is because of the “golden ratio” — that
is, sending 92-93 per cent of all donations overseas, to the children.
“Every decision we make and expense we have to incur, we make sure
upfront that we are going to be able to send (that percentage of) money
to the children,” he said.
It’s also why, according to Connell, the charity only received
a B rating in the “reserve fund size” category.
“We just don’t believe that we should keep money back and
have a big reserve,” Connell explained. “The money we do
have — four months reserve — is where we want to keep it.”
But the B rating in the “governance and transparency” section
is something Connell says Chalice will be working on.
“We need to look at improvement. We’re not
showing enough (financial information) on our website,” he said. “We
just need to get up there. That’s not something we would ever hide.
It’s open to anybody.”
In the other two categories, “charity efficiency” and “fundraising
efficiency,” Chalice received two A+ grades. In the section of
International Aid and Development charities, in which Chalice fit, the
only other organizations to receive an overall A rating were Free the
Children and Compassion Canada, another sponsorship program.
“We love the work that we do and we get to see the results in the
field and the difference that it makes,” he said.
“It’s rewarding to see that you get recognition.”