Enduring Support for the Arts

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts?
    The Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts is a public Foundation dedicated solely to supporting the arts in Saskatchewan. The Foundation is the best opportunity for independent, efficient, donor-directed, individually-targeted, in perpetuity, legacy gifts for the Saskatchewan arts.
  2. What is a foundation?
    A foundation is an organization dedicated to holding charitable gifts (endowments) in perpetuity, and only the interest earned on the original gift is used to support the purposes of the charity.
  3. Why is the Foundation necessary?
    Many people and organizations in the province are interested in supporting the arts in perpetuity. Until now, there has been no real opportunity for them to do so in Saskatchewan. In addition, arts organizations face uncertain funding from year to year depending upon government, fundraising, and individual and business donations. The Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts will provide the opportunity for donors to build permanent and stable resources for the arts.
  4. Is a Foundation donation tax deductible?
    Yes. The Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts is a registered charity and is recognized by the Government of Canada. Our charitable number is 81555 4274 RR0001.
  5. How can I donate?
    Donations can be made to:
    Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts
    email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
    When you make your donation, you will be asked to sign a form requiring the Foundation to hold your gift on your behalf, in perpetuity.
  6. Must all donations be held in perpetuity?
    The Foundation’s primary intent is to hold all gifts in perpetuity. These gifts are called endowments and, to comply with Canada Revenue Agency rules, the gift must be held for at least ten years.
  7. How will the Foundation benefit arts organizations and artists?
    A number of arts organizations have considered setting up foundations themselves; however, management of endowment funds can be costly. The Foundation has the ability to manage an endowment or trust, on behalf of a charitable arts organization. Arts organizations will benefit by having their endowment managed by the Foundation where gifts are pooled to gain a better return on investment and keep administrative costs down.

    Artists benefit by having a broader base of funding than is currently available through the traditional funding agencies to support the advancement of their work for the public’s benefit.

  8. Will the Foundation’s fundraising efforts compete with those of existing arts organizations?
    It is not the intent of the Foundation to compete with the arts community in fundraising, but rather to provide an opportunity to increase the amount of money available for the arts in the province. Some donors may prefer to give to an endowment fund where investment income assures ongoing funding versus a one-time donation that might be spent in a year. The Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts offers donors this opportunity. In some instances, donors may prefer to place their gift in a general endowment fund so the investment income reaches a broad base of the arts.
  9. What types of funds does the Foundation currently have?
    Currently, the Foundation has four distinct funds: Named, Designated, Undesignated and Operating. For a Named Fund a minimum donation of $5,000 is required. The investment income is not designated to a specific arts activity. With a Designated Fund, $10,000 is required and the donor can request how the investment income on their gift will be spent. An Undesignated Fund can be any amount and is not designated to a specific arts activity. The Operating Fund is an endowment to support the operating costs of the Foundation, such as bringing juries together, and administrative expenses.
  10. How much of my donation will go to administration and overhead?
    One-half of 1% of the average value of the funds invested each year is paid for investment management. Operating costs and administration will be funded through targeted donations, sponsorships, and the income from the Operating Fund.
  11. What is the legal status of my gift?
    The Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts is a legal organization and is governed by a Board of Trustees. The money donated to the Foundation is held in trust, and qualifies as a charitable gift as defined by the Canada Revenue Agency. The trustees have a fiduciary obligation to hold the donations in perpetuity and use the investment income earned only for the purposes that match the objectives of the Foundation. The Trustees are legally obligated to ensure the intent of each donation is fulfilled.
  12. Are there any limitations to what I may do?
    Yes. The money can only be held for charitable purposes, and the purpose of the gift must match the purpose of the Foundation. The Foundation’s purpose is fairly broad, but donors may not request that his or her gift go to a specific individual. If a donor intends the gift to go towards individuals, an open competition for applicants must be held.

    With respect to endowments for organizations, those organizations must be charitable themselves. Fortunately, many arts organizations in Saskatchewan are charitable organizations.

    We provide several funds to help ensure that your donation is directed to the area of the arts that most interests you, and we can assist you to develop a targeted donation.

  13. What types of awards will be made?
    All kinds of awards can be made depending on the fund to which the money is given, and providing the purpose of the award benefits the residents of Saskatchewan. Some examples of awards that will support the activities of arts organizations and individual artists are:
    • Scholarships, bursaries or awards to individuals;
    • Conducting interpretive arts programs and community arts projects;
    • Exhibiting or touring art works or other art forms;
    • Improving operating capacity and managerial capabilities through training and professional development;
    • Demonstrating or presenting the skills of particular art forms;
    • Conducting research, including independent curatorial activities, and research on new techniques or new technologies;
    • Advancing knowledge and skills in particular art forms through formal or informal training programs such as apprenticeships or mentoring relationships; or
    • Creating new bodies of work for public presentation or exhibition.
  14. How will awards be decided?
    Juries of peers will determine where money should be allocated. Peer juries are seen as experts, they are free of conflict, and they are supported by the arts community. New juries will be struck each year. A number of different jury mechanisms may be used – for example, money may be disbursed through existing adjudication systems such as the Saskatchewan Arts Boards juries, or through a peer jury created by the Foundation. Which jury is used will depend on what the gift is intended to support, and donors can discuss the jury mechanism when they make their donation.
  15. Will any money be spent out of province?
    Possibly yes, when an award is made to assist in travel, education, or other reasons which enhance the arts in the province. However, the primary focus will be on direct assistance to activities in the province.
  16. How will the Foundation ensure that the awards are disbursed fairly and equitably across the province?
    The donor will have the opportunity to request that investment income from a gift be disbursed across the province or in a particular town or city. That wish will be honored through the adjudication process. The Foundation will also have a number of communication channels to ensure it is apprised of the needs in the arts community, which will help to inform where awards are needed most.
  17. What happens if a charitable arts organization to which you made your gift ceases to exist?
    The Trustees of the Foundation have a legal obligation to ensure that your gift is used in a manner consistent with the original intent of the gift. The money would be used to support a similar organization or a similar field of activity.
  18. If I become disenchanted with the Foundation is it possible to recover my donation?
    No. Gifts from donors are made voluntarily. The Board of Trustees have a legal and fiduciary responsibility to see that awards are made to support the charitable purpose of the Foundation, and that a donor’s request is compatible with the Foundation’s purpose.
  19. Does the Arts Foundation currently have any operating funds?
    The Foundation currently has a small Operating Endowment Fund and is seeking contributions for operational requirements, and donations to this Fund.
  20. When will awards be made?
    Each year the Board determines whether the interest earned on donations is sufficient to release awards.

    The opportunity to apply for an award is communicated in the fall of each year.