Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs for Charities

No. Aqueduct does not have an open public granting program and does not accept unsolicited grant applications.

We primarily grant by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) and always email a corresponding grant confirmation letter to the charity. The EFT will be sent from Scotiatrust but will not be identified as a grant from Aqueduct Foundation. If you receive a cheque, it will also be issued by Scotiatrust, Aqueduct’s custodian. Before contacting Aqueduct about the grant, please coordinate with colleagues in your organization who may have already received the confirmation email regarding the payment.

Aqueduct provides a confirmation letter to the charity accompanying each grant. While most grants made by Aqueduct include the donor or fund name, we also have a small number of donors who choose to grant anonymously.

We send letters to the charity’s general email account. In situations where we have previously worked with a staff member of the charity, If you have received a grant payment without a letter, please check with your colleagues or reach out to us for confirmation. Best practice is to provide us with a general email address to receive these letters.

Please send an email to [email protected] with inquiries and a member of our team will get back to you to confirm that you are speaking to an Aqueduct representative. Aqueduct Foundation is operated by employees of Scotiatrust, which is part of Scotia Wealth Management.

Yes. Aqueduct does provide multi-year grants in certain circumstances. Our preference is to put in place an agreement to document the grant on both sides.

No. Aqueduct is a registered charity and tax exempt. Please do not issue a tax receipt. However, our donors appreciate “thank you” letters and we will be sure to share those with them.

FAQs for Non-Qualified Donees

Non-qualified donees are organizations in Canada and internationally that engage in charitable activities but who do not have registered charitable status with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

No. Aqueduct does not have an open public granting program and does not accept unsolicited grant applications.

No. Aqueduct does not facilitate “directed giving,” in accordance with CRA rules regarding grants to non-qualified donees.

Aqueduct has established a policy and process for making grants to non-qualified donees, which is subject to the CRA’s guidance. Each grant and grant recipient is required to be approved separately. Aqueduct also conducts a risk assessment process and requires reporting by grantees.

FAQs for Funds

A donor advised fund is a fund held and owned by a charity that is established by one or more donors. The donor provides advice or recommendations to the charity to make grants to charities.

Yes.  Donors may choose the timeframe that their fund remains in place to grant to other charities.  Options include immediate payout (less than 2 years), a spend-down mandate of a defined period (for example, 10 years), or with minimum annual grants made with the capital maintained over the long-term.  Donors always have flexibility to speed-up or slow down the rate of granting. 

Aqueduct offers three long-term investment portfolio options, as well as spend-down fund and short-term money market funds. These portfolios are monitored by Aqueduct’s investment committee, which is a Board sub-committee. Our foundation managers work with donors and their investment advisors to determine the best fit for each individual fund.

Aqueduct charges an Expense Recovery Allocation against its funds, which is inclusive of foundation and investment management costs. The expenses of operating the Foundation are allocated to individual funds based on a published, sliding-scale formula, linked to the assets of each fund.

No. Unlike other charities, Aqueduct does not provide any public donor recognition of its own. Aqueduct does, however, help donors receive recognition by charities they support. Alternately, donors can choose to grant anonymously.

Yes. Donors may choose to grant 100% of their fund to any registered charity or qualified donee, at any time.

Aqueduct names officers of the charity or not-for-profit organization to whom Aqueduct is granting.

FAQs for Gifts

A new fund can be established with an initial irrevocable donation of $100,000. Aqueduct’s target minimum is $250,000, but we understand some donors need a few years to build to that level.

Aqueduct accepts a wide variety of property. Donations to Aqueduct Foundation may include cash, publicly traded securities, and mutual funds, as well as more complex assets such as art, real estate or private company shares.

Yes. Aqueduct focuses on bequests and other estate donations. A donor may establish a legacy fund now, which is designed to be funded with a future estate donation. Donor advised funds can also be support with a combination of lifetime and estate donations.

The minimum estate donation required to establish a legacy fund is $250,000.

No. Aqueduct specializes in planning and managing large, exceptional donations from our donor’s assets or wealth. We recommend that donors work with community-based charities if they wish to raise money from several donors.

Yes. Aqueduct has a well-established process for the valuation, acceptance, and ongoing monitoring of donations of private company shares. Please contact us at [email protected] for a copy of our brochure on this topic.

FAQs for Charitable Programs

Yes. Aqueduct has charitable purposes, which allows it to operate charitable programs such as community based scholarships, artist foundations, management of ecologically sensitive land, and managing charitable purpose real estate.

A community-based scholarship is a student oriented educational award, with selection focused on a particular community. Aqueduct works with community partners to identify and adjudicate applicants. The scholarship is paid to the student to attend the post-secondary institution of their choice.

An artist foundation is a fund, often established through an estate plan, that holds and manages artworks. Management includes grants, loans, sales and research into the artist’s work to ensure their public legacy is honoured.

Although not a land trust, Aqueduct can buy and hold ecologically sensitive land on a temporary basis to preserve it. Aqueduct does this in collaboration with local land trusts.

Charitable purpose real estate is land and buildings held to further a charitable purpose. Aqueduct can hold real estate for other Canadian registered charities, simplifying the ongoing management process.

FAQs for Scholarships

Students may apply using the link to the application portal listed under the Scholarships section of our website.

All of our scholarships are established at the recommendation of our donors. Most of our scholarships are open to students in a particular community (Ex. Windsor-Essex region) and/or limited to students studying in a specific area of study or faculty (Ex. Computer Science). Please check the scholarship criteria to determine your eligibility.

Each scholarship establishes its own eligibility criteria. Most incorporate a combination of academic merit, extra-curricular/community involvement, and leadership skills.

For scholarship inquiries, please email [email protected].

FAQs for About us/Team page

Aqueduct is a registered Canadian charity, governed by a volunteer board of directors that is majority arm’s length from Scotiabank. Aqueduct has four board sub-committees: Investment Committee; Audit & Finance Committee; Gift Acceptance Committee; Governance & Nominating Committee. Aqueduct’s staff are employed by Scotiatrust.

Aqueduct was established by Scotiatrust in 2006 and contracts with Scotiatrust for administrative services and various Scotiabank affiliates for investment management. As a charity, Aqueduct does not have shareholders and Scotiabank does not own Aqueduct.

No. Aqueduct Foundation is a Canadian registered charity, a public foundation, that holds donors advised funds, legacy funds, and charity funds. A donor advised fund is a type of charitable fund, not a type of registered charity.