Voluntary Sector Reporting Awards

Voluntary Sector Reporting Awards

November 25, 2008 09:55 ET

Toronto Charities Tie For Voluntary Sector Reporting Awards

United Way, Covenant House honoured for financial reporting excellence

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 25, 2008) - The United Way Toronto and Covenant House tied for first place among charities with revenues over $1 million in the first annual Voluntary Sector Reporting Awards (VSRAs), which were announced at a luncheon ceremony in North York on November 24. At a time when financial reporting is becoming increasingly important to organizations of all types and sizes, the VSRAs recognize those organizations within Ontario's diverse and growing not-for-profit sector that have achieved best practices.

Established in 1956, United Way Toronto is a charity working to advance the common good and create opportunities for a better life for everyone in Toronto. Working in partnership with others, United Way mobilizes people and resources to address the root causes of social problems and to change community conditions for the better. United Way supports agencies that provide services to strengthen individuals, families, and communities. Find out more at: www.unitedwaytoronto.org.

Covenant House Toronto is a leading expert in and advocate for homeless youth in Canada. It serves the homeless youth population and provides a comprehensive range of housing and support services. Find out more at: www.covenanthouse.ca.

"We're deeply honoured that United Way's 2007 Annual Report was recognized by the VSRA for its description of who we are and what we do," said Catherine Smith, Chief Operating Officer of United Way Toronto. "Each year we do our best to connect the dots between what we say in our mission statement and what we do in the community. Accountability and transparency are guiding principles that shape how we communicate our progress - so we're proud that our 2007 Annual Report told the United Way story in a clear and compelling way."

"We are honoured to receive this recognition from the Voluntary Sector Reporting Award's expert judges," said Ruth daCosta, Covenant House executive director. "This new award recognizes high standards in accountability and transparency that enables donors to have confidence in the charities they support."

The winners in the other categories were:

Total Revenues of $500,000 up to $1 million

- Sarnia-Lambton "Rebound" - A Program for Youth

Total Revenues less than $500,000

- Children's International Learning Centre

"With an eye towards promoting timely and accurate financial statements, the Voluntary Sector Reporting Awards (VSRAs) program was launched by CA-Queen's Centre for Governance under the sponsorship of Queen's School of Business, PricewaterhouseCoopers Canada (PwC) and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario," said Steve Salterio, Director of the CA-Queen's Centre for Governance. "If this type of award can help charities show current and potential supporters that they practice assessable, clear and transparent reporting about how they handle their resources and fulfill their mandates, then only good things can happen."

The awards recognize best practices for financial reporting by registered charities that produce annual reports in Ontario. Their annual reports are rated for availability, clarity, user friendliness, accessibility and impact. Organizations competed in categories based on revenue size with the winner in each category receiving $5,000 and recognition as leaders in the field.

"PwC's involvement as an awards sponsor stems from our firm's interest in promoting and enhancing transparency in financial reporting," said Chris Clark, CEO and Canadian Senior Partner of PwC. "This award is one more way that PwC, in addition to the activities of our PwC Canada Foundation, demonstrates its commitment to the health of the non-profit sector."

"Many of our members either work for or volunteer with not-for-profits," said Brian Hunt, FCA, President and CEO of the Institute. "We believe this type of competition can motivate the entire sector to continually raise the bar for financial reporting and help them accomplish the many wonderful things they do in communities across Ontario."

About the CA-Queen's Centre for Governance at Queen's School of Business

CA-Queen's Centre for Governance (business.queensu.ca/centres/CA-QCG/) goal is to raise the bar on Canadian governance research and convey that research's implications to fellow academics, students and the public at large. Situated at Queen's School of Business (business.queensu.ca), one of the world's premier business schools, the Centre conducts cutting edge basic and applied research on corporate governance issues dealing with such issues as fraud prevention through better internal control and improving Canadian securities regulation. The Centre is also actively involved in the not for profit sector through the associated Fundamental of Governance for Boards of municipal, provincial and federal agencies, and not-for-profit organizations executive development course, case writing, applied research and now the Voluntary Sector Reporting Awards.

About the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario:

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario is the qualifying and regulatory body of Ontario's more than 33,000 CAs and 5,000 CA students. Since 1879, the Institute has protected the public interest through the CA profession's high standards of qualification and the enforcement of its rules of professional conduct. Recognized internationally, the CA designation denotes financial expertise, strategic thinking, business insight and leadership. The Institute website is: www.icao.on.ca and the student website is www.ca2b.biz.

About the PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP:

PricewaterhouseCoopers (www.pwc.com) provides industry-focused assurance, tax and advisory services to build public trust and enhance value for its clients and their stakeholders. More than 155,000 people in 153 countries across our network share their thinking, experience and solutions to develop fresh perspectives and practical advice. In Canada, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (www.pwc.com/ca) and its related entities have more than 5,200 partners and staff in offices across the country.

"PricewaterhouseCoopers" refers to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, an Ontario limited liability partnership, or, as the context requires, the PricewaterhouseCoopers global network or other member firms of the network, each of which is a separate and independent legal entity.

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