Major Canadian Charity Lotteries

This research has populated this attached spreadsheet with details of five charity lotteries in Canada. These lotteries were identified based on highest probability of winning. After searching through various publications for major charity lotteries based on revenue, this team was unable to identify such ranking. For this reason, the charities presented below are ranked based on highest winning probability.

1. CHEO Dream of a Lifetime Lottery

  • The winning probability of this lottery is 1:14.

2. Dream It Win It Lottery

  • The winning probability of this lottery is 1:18.

3. St. Boniface Mega Millions

  • The winning probability of this lottery is 1:19.

4. QEII Home Lottery

  • The winning probability of this lottery is 1:19.

5. New Brunswick Hospital Home Lottery

  • The winning probability of this lottery is 1:19.

Research Strategy

This research presents the top five lotteries based on the highest chance of winning. This source also presents lotteries that give the most to charities by percentage. This research has also ensured that the charities provided prior to this research have not been included. Three of the five lotteries identified do not have a physical location listed on the official website.

Charity Lottery Tabulation Service Providers

Some major players in the charity lottery space in Canada based on popularity include The Canadian Cancer Society Lottery, Heart & Stroke, Cheo Dream Of A Lifetime, Big Brother Home, and BC Children’s Hospital. Details have been provided in the attached spreadsheet.

Helpful Findings

  • The Canadian Cancer Society Lottery offers people an opportunity to win a cash prize or car while funding Canada’s best cancer research.
  • Heart & Stroke is a Canadian charity organization committed to education, advocacy, and the funding of study encompassing heart disease and stroke. They offer Grand Prizes, Electronics, Bonus Draw Prizes, Loyalty Prizes, VIP Prizes, Super Bonus Prizes, and Early Bird Prizes.
  • CHEO Dream Of A Lifetime ensures that patients have access to cutting-edge technology, offers life-supporting programs, world-class research, and provides urgent needs of patients. Their lottery services offer individuals a chance to win their dream cars and vacations.
  • Big brother home provides an option for people to buy tickets and win prizes. The money is used to ensure that “children and youth have access to healthy relationships and safe places to go after school.”

Charity Lotteries Canada: Trends

The closure of showhomes and in-person ticket sales outlets and the provision of cash alternatives or cash additions to non-cash prizes are two trends that are taking place in Canada’s charity lottery space. Details about these two trends are provided below.

Closure of Showhomes and In-Person Ticket Sales Outlets

  • Charity lotteries have been forced to close their showhomes and in-person ticket sales outlets because of the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, the Princess Margaret Home Lottery, citing concerns around the pandemic, has closed its local retail ticket sales outlets and hospital and showhome ticket sales kiosks.
  • Its FAQs page shows that due to the pandemic, its ticket outlets at car dealerships and Henry’s stores will be closed this fall, and its ticket sales kiosks at its Oakville showhome and its hospitals Princess Margaret Cancer Center, Toronto Western Hospital, and Toronto General Hospital, will be closed until further notice. People can instead buy lottery tickets online or via mail or phone. The Princess Margaret Home Lottery says it is implementing these measures to ensure the health and safety of its employees and visitors.
  • STARS Lottery in Alberta, which helps in providing Alberta with air ambulance service, has also closed its showhomes. Its FAQs page shows that in-person lottery ticket sales at these showhomes is no longer available. The decision to close the showhomes was made following the request of Alberta Health Services for gatherings of over 50 people that involve vulnerable populations to be canceled.
  • STARS Lottery decided to close its showhomes because hundreds of people visit its showhomes every day and it wants to protect its staff and supporters from contracting the coronavirus. STARS Lottery is requesting its supporters to turn to photo galleries and video tours of its showhomes. and to buy tickets online or via phone instead.
  • The impact of these closures on the revenues of charity lotteries could not be located in the public domain, however. Charity Intelligence provides financial data on these charity lotteries, but the impact of these closures could not be reliably determined from this data.
  • For the fiscal year that ended in March 2020, Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation reported a net lottery revenue of $41,582,000, 23.7% higher than the amount recorded for the previous fiscal year. The brunt of the pandemic took place in March and April, however.

Provision of Cash Alternatives or Cash Additions to Non-Cash Prizes

  • The provision of cash alternatives or cash additions to non-cash prizes seems to be a growing trend. Heart & Stroke Lottery, for example, has introduced a new cash alternative to its Loyalty Prize this year. Winners of Heart & Stroke Lottery’s Loyalty Prizes have the option to accept the non-cash prize as is or take the cash alternative. The non-cash prize is an LG Appliance package worth more than $7,000, while the cash alternative is $5,000.
  • Heart & Stroke Lottery is offering this new cash alternative on top of the other cash alternatives it has been offering on its Grand Prizes and its Early Bird Prize. Three of Heart & Stroke Lottery’s six Grand Prizes are non-cash prizes with cash alternatives. The winner of Grand Prize #5, for example, can choose between Mercedes Benz GLC 350 4Matice or $70,000. Heart & Stroke Lottery’s Early Bird Prize is also a non-cash prize with a cash alternative.
  • SickKids Lottery in Ontario is also offering a number of cash alternatives. On its Prizes page, it can be seen that it is offering five car or cash prizes. Its Early Bonus prize, for example, gives the winner the option to choose $39,000 cash or one of two cars, namely, the 2020 BMW 230i and the 2020 BMW X1 xDrive 28i.
  • BC Children’s Hospital Lottery, on the other hand, is offering home, car, and cash grand prizes. Each grand prize is a home, car, and cash combination. Its first grand prize, for example, is a home in Kelowna, a 2020 Audi e-Tron Progressive Quattro, and $1.2 million cash.
  • It is not clear what prompted these charity lotteries to offer cash alternatives or cash additions, but there was news in 2017 that Hospital Home Lottery winners had sold the homes they had won for far less than their listed values. The winners reportedly wanted to get rid of the homes as soon as they could because the homes were too costly to own and maintain. They sold their homes for $150,000 or $200,000 less than the price they could have the sold the homes if they had more time to look for a buyer.

Charity Lotteries Canada: Technology

Technology has facilitated an increase in sales/revenue, engagement, and participation in the charity lottery for many Canadian charitable organizations. Additionally, technology such as computers and electronic raffle software has improved the security and integrity of the charity lottery market in Canada.

Increasing Sales/Revenue and Participation Through Digital Raffles and Sweepstakes

  • Turnkey digital solutions have been implemented in the charity lottery market to make conducting and operating charity campaigns simpler for non-profit entities in Canada and enable them to concentrate on increasing revenue. Solutions are available that present first-rate turnkey programs, such as those provided by Ascend Fundraising Solutions, that enable organizations to reach revenue, engagement, and donor acquisition streams that are profitable. Organizations can use the technology to integrate both online and offline fundraising and achieve donor acquisition.
  • Electronic 50/50 gaming solutions (50% to the winner, 50% to charity) that offer real-time experiences has helped to increase sales/revenue, engagement, and participation in the charitable lottery market in Canada. Organizations are given access to real-time displays showing the growth of lottery jackpots, online sales portals, seller and performance management tools, opportunities for XML and API integration, and sales can be integrated online or at events.
  • Also available are digital-first sweepstakes that serve as an effective means of operating national fundraising campaigns and engaging brand-new donors. Charitable groups benefit from turnkey programs, structure and strategy programs, online donation portals, seller and performance management tools, integration of mobile applications, and donor management integration.
  • Four companies that are registered suppliers of electronic raffles and solutions in Canada include Ascend, Bump Worldwide, Canadian Bank Note Company, and MNP LLP. Through Ascend alone, more than $717 million has been raised through the charity lottery market.
  • The Toronto Blue Jays’ charitable arm, the Jays Care Foundation collaborated with the Canadian Bank Note Company (CBN), a digital raffle technology business, in 2019 to sell tickets to fans in Ontario to a 50/50 raffle event, where the tickets could be purchased via mobile point-of-sale sellers or online. The charitable event took advantage of CBN’s “online 50/50 sales fulfillment solution” that acts as an end-to-end turnkey digital solution. This particular event resulted in a $538,897 raffle prize, which was the largest in MLB history.
  • In 2014, the Ottawa Senators Foundation, which invests in programs for education and recreation to support both mental and physical wellness in children, also partnered with CBN, along with the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation (OLG) to utilize the OLG’s 50/50 Pilot Program, with the goal of enhancing donor experiences and revenue. The three entities collaborated to secure the appropriate hardware, establish back-end systems, and create supporting software. As a result of their work, the electronic 50/50 draw improved ticket sales by 30% within the first year and allowed the foundation to distribute more funds to Ontario’s local communities.
  • Two years later, in the year 2016, children/youth organizations within Ontario were granted around $1 million due to the revenue generated by this particular electronic 50/50 raffle.
  • Additionally, the Canucks For Kids Foundation used the 50/50 raffle solutions crafted by Ascend Fundraising Solutions to achieve its goal of raising $1 million. The CNIB Foundation also applied Ascend’s 50/50 raffle solutions to raise approximately $325,000 in only three months using online portals, along with dozens of Walmart locations in Ontario. The Chatham-Kent Health Alliance used these solutions to raise a total of $298,720.

Improved Security & Integrity

  • Technology has helped to improve the security of the charity lottery market in Canada, specifically electronic raffles. According to the Electronic Raffles Findings Report from the Alcohol & Gaming Commission of Ontario, the usage of computers for charity raffles aids in enhancing both the integrity and security of the events. The report also states that it bolsters the confidence and contentment of participants.
  • Moreover, technology such as computers facilitates traceable, real-time reporting to provide better accountability and transparency as well as adherence to various regulations.
  • With turn-key electronic raffle programs and other solutions, charitable groups can utilize electronic raffle software to make their raffle programs more credible and secure. There are a number of standards that must be followed for an electronic raffle software to become certified.
  • The integrity of electronic raffle software in the province of Alberta must be thoroughly evaluated by an accredited testing facility to receive certification. After the system has been installed, on-site testing is required to occur in order to guarantee that security applications have been configured properly. According to a document from the Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis (AGLC) agency, this testing might include corroborating the IT infrastructure and internal controls, evaluating the system’s stability at the maximum expected loads, and event simulations both “with and without challenges to system operations.”
  • Also, electronic raffle systems in Alberta are required to provide a mechanism that obtains a ticket purchaser’s personal information securely. The process must involve the completion of identity verification and the ticket buyer recognizing the terms and conditions and privacy policies in order for the purchase to be approved or their account to become fully registered. Additionally, the software has to be managed by a logon procedure that is secure and does not allow the modification of the configurations settings established by the raffle sales units without there being an authorized logon.
  • The Ottawa Senators Foundation’s partnership with CBN and OLG to develop “a real-time electronic 50/50 game experience” resulted in an improvement in the charity event’s accuracy, security, and security. The technology adopted for the initiative allows both the ticket and transaction numbers to be accounted for within a central database, while the winning number gets pulled “by an enterprise-quality random number generator.”

Charity Lotteries Canada: Buyers

In Ontario Canada, about 42% of adults are lottery buyers. Additionally, 50% of men to 49% of women buy lottery tickets.


  • Approximately 42 percent of adults in Ontario are current lottery buyers, meaning they purchased a ticket at least once in the past two months of 2019.
  • About 57 percent purchased a ticket in the last twelve months of 2019, and more specifically, 52 percent exclusively bought “draw-based games like LOTTO 6/49 and LOTTO MAX.”
  • 17% of the adults bought a lottery ticket once a week.
  • Lottery ticket buyers in the region are likely to be over 35 years, “high school or community college educated, working full time outside the home or retired and have somewhat higher household income levels.”
  • About 16% of the buyers are under the age of 35 years.
  • The average age for lottery ticket buyers is 51 years.
  • The data shows that 50% of men to 49% of women buy lottery tickets.
  • Roughly 33% have a household income of $100,000 and over, 29% ($50,000-$99,000), and 18% (under $50,000). The average household income is $120,000.
  • Approximately 23% of current buyers are high school educated, 32% are community educated, and 43% have reached some university or are postgraduates.
  • By employment status, about 56% are working full-time outside the home, 9% are working part-time, and 26% are retired.
Glenn is the Lead Operations Research Analyst at The Digital Momentum with experience in research, statistical data analysis and interview techniques. A holder of degree in Economics. A true specialist in quantitative and qualitative research.


Previous article


Next article

You may also like


Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published.