Donor Toolkit


Here are some of the most common questions Calgary Foundation (CF) receives from Donors and Professional Advisors:


Q: How can I donate to Calgary Foundation? Is there a minimum donation amount?
A: You can contribute any amount to our existing Endowment Funds. Donors, Corporations and Charitable Organizations can also create Endowment Funds. For more information, visit the types of gifts page.


Q: What is the minimum amount required to start a Fund?
A: An individual, group or organization needs a minimum amount of $10,000 to establish a Fund. (minimum amount can vary with specific fund types – view our cost recovery page for more information).


Q: What are my giving options?
A: Calgary Foundation offers a variety of giving options. Whether it’s contributing to a pre-established Fund, establishing a Fund, or making complex, long-term gifting arrangements, the Foundation works with donors to meet financial requirements and philanthropic goals. For more information, visit the types of gifts page.


Q: Can charitable Funds established at Calgary Foundation benefit areas outside Calgary?
A: Yes, Calgary Foundation grants to Canadian organizations operating throughout our country and abroad. Calgary Foundation grants to any organization that is deemed a €qualified donee€ by Canada Revenue Agency. Under the Income Tax Act, qualified donees are organizations that can issue official donation receipts for gifts that individuals and corporations make to them. View a list of qualified donees on the Canada Revenue Agency.


Q: What is the tax advantage for giving a gift of publicly-traded securities to Calgary Foundation?
A:  Gifts of publicly-traded securities (i.e.: stocks, income trust units, bonds, and mutual fund units) are exempt from capital gains tax. This is one of the most tax effective ways to make a charitable donation.


Q: Will I receive a tax receipt for my donation?
A: For eligible donations valued at $25 or more, Calgary Foundation will issue official charitable tax receipts. For more information, view our 2016 Tax Receipt Deadlines.


Q: What costs are recovered from funds at Calgary Foundation?
A:  Annual Costs for permanent endowments are tiered by fund size: 1st tier – 1.25% up to $1 million; 2nd tier – 1.00% on the next $5 million; 3rd tier – 0.90% on the next $14 million; 4th tier – 0.80% on the next $30 million. For more information, visit the cost recovery page.


Q: What type of assets can I use to establish a Fund?
A: There are 15 types of planned gifting assets.  The most common classes include Outright Gifts of Cash, Gifts of Publicly Listed Securities, Life Insurance Policies and Bequests by Will. Calgary Foundation can help donors customize a giving approach that takes into account personal interests and tax planning needs. For more information, visit the types of gifts page.


Q: What amount can I expect to disburse in grants each year from the endowment Fund I’ve established?
A: Calgary Foundation’s distributions are based on the market value of each Endowment Fund, at the end of our fiscal year (March 31st). Our board has adopted a methodology that uses a hybrid formula that will more effectively account for market fluctuations over time, smoothing peaks and valleys in our distribution levels year after year.  This will help us to achieve our goal of giving as much as possible to the community each year while better preserving the value of our endowment over time. The distribution rate is confirmed annually by the Board of Directors. Current distribution rate is effectively 4.0%.


Q: Which money managers does Calgary Foundation use to manage the Funds?
A: The Foundation employs several professional investment firms to manage the Funds in its care. By allocating the Funds to various asset classes, the Foundation can select investment managers based on their areas of expertise. For more information, visit the investment overview page.


Q: If I am interested in a particular sector (for example the arts & heritage), can Calgary Foundation help connect me to interesting proposals that are looking for funding?
A: Yes. That is a key advantage of having a Fund with Calgary Foundation. CF develops networks in a wide range of sectors and are well placed to make simple and powerful connections between donors and organizations in the community.