There are three types of registered charities in Canada:

  1. Private foundation
  2. Public foundation or
  3. Charitable organization

Canadian foundations are a diverse group of funders, dispersed across the country, that contribute close to 6 billion dollars to qualified donees annually.

Overview of the Foundation Sector

Source: Canada Revenue Agency (list of charities, online data as of September 2022).

Assets and Grants (2020) All Private and Public Foundations*

Public and private foundations held about $123 billion in assets and made over $8 billion in grants in 2020.

Source: Imagine Canada, September 2022.

*Includes Mastercard Foundation which is Canada’s largest foundation (private).

Foundation Assets 2008-2020

Source: Imagine Canada

Foundation Grants 2008-2020

From 2010 to 2020, grants by public and private foundations grants increased from over $3 billion to over $8 billion

Source: Imagine Canada, September 2022.

Growth in Number of Foundations 2005-2022

Source: Canada Revenue Agency (charities listings online as of September 2022). 

Geographic Distribution All Foundations

Source: Canada Revenue Agency (charities listings online as of September 2022).