Our Privacy Policy



This Privacy Policy is designed to comply with applicable privacy legislation in Canada. It is also designed to help individuals understand how their personal information is managed at SOS Children's Villages Canada.




Those individuals protected by this Privacy Policy include donors, sponsors, partners, volunteers, recipients and others who interact with us. This Privacy Policy applies only to information collected during the course of charity activities.

Leave a Gift of carefree childhood as a part of your personal legacy



If the policies and procedures outlined in this document do not address a specific situation, individuals are expected to contact the SOS Children's Villages' Privacy Officer for guidance or clarification.


The Principles


Our Privacy Policy is designed to comply with applicable privacy legislation in Canada. It incorporates the following 10 principles: 

  1. Accountability 
  2. Identifying Purpose 
  3. Consent 
  4. Limiting Collection 
  5. Limiting Use, Disclosure and Retention 
  6. Accuracy of Personal Information 
  7. Safeguarding Personal Information 
  8. Openness 
  9. Access to Personal Information 
  10. Challenging Compliance  

If we change our Privacy Policy in the future, those changes will be included in updates to our official Privacy Policy, wherever it is made available. Thus, you will always know what information we collect, how we use it and how we protect it. When personal information that has been collected is to be used for a purpose not previously identified, the new purpose will be identified to you prior to use.



SOS Children's Villages Canada is responsible for maintaining and protecting the personal information under its control. Accountability for this function within our organization is held by:

240-44 Byward Market Square
Ottawa, Ontario K1N 7A2
[email protected]


Identifying Purpose

Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) defines personal information as any information about a specific, identifiable individual, such as name, address, or phone number, but not including the name, title, business address or business phone number of an employee of an organization. The personal information that we collect, use and disclose - with express or implied consent - and the reasons why we collect such information are as follows: 

  • Name, address, phone number, and fax number - to provide quality, responsive service; to issue donation receipts for income tax purposes; opportunities to volunteer or to give; to send thank you communications; and to report and communicate about our program results and how donors' financial support is making a difference. 
  • E-mail address - to send electronic receipts and to communicate program results, funding needs, opportunities to volunteer or to give, special events, and other similar information to donors and other supporters, through cost-effective e-newsletters or permission-based email messages. 
  • Marital status and spouse's name - to build stronger, sustained relationships with our volunteers, donors, members, and supporters, and to be able to issue donation receipts in the names of both spouses, where that is their wish.
  • Information related to chequing or credit card accounts - to provide high quality, convenient service in accepting and processing donations.
  • Information about relationships, preferences, opinions, and beliefs - to build stronger relationships with our donors, volunteers and other supporters; and to be able to target special requests for volunteer support or fundraising assistance. 
  • Information about professional, employment and business relationships - to conduct donor prospect research; to make specially targeted requests for volunteer support or fundraising assistance.

We collect personal information about our donors and other stakeholders in the following ways: 

  • via donation reply coupons; 
  • via our web site and other charitable giving web sites (e.g. Canadahelps.org); 
  • via the phone; 
  • in-person; 
  • via purchase order forms; 
  • via personal cheques; 
  • via third party suppliers, from whom we obtain confidentiality and protection of privacy commitments; 
  • via public domain sources such as published directories or other organizations' public documents such as annual reports, which facilitate our prospect research; with donor consent, via list trading with other progressive, like-minded charities, from whom confidentiality and protection of privacy commitments are obtained.


SOS Children's Villages Canada routinely collects anonymous, non-personal information through our Web servers. This is information that is not associated with or traced back to a specific individual. Gathered electronically, this information includes the type of Web browser used, the level of encryption a browser supports and the Internet Protocol address. This information may be used for research and analytical purposes, to examine how the Web site is being used and to determine how it can be improved.


SOS Children's Villages Canada also uses cookies. A cookie is a small piece of information that is sent to your computer when you access a Web site. There are two kinds of cookies. A session cookie is stored temporarily in your computer's memory. A session cookie is destroyed as soon as you close your browser. A persistent cookie is a more permanent line of text that gets saved to your hard drive.


We use session and persistent cookies on the SOS Children's Villages website site, to allow you to store your store your language preferences, and may be used in the future if we develop a 'login section' for other content display preferences.


We may use third-parties to serve ads to our website. These companies may employ cookies and action tags (also known as single pixel gifs or web beacons) to measure advertising effectiveness. Any information that these third parties collect via cookies and action tags is completely anonymous.




An individual's knowledge and consent are required before SOS Children's Villages Canada is allowed to collect, use or disclose his or her personal information, except where inappropriate. Where possible, SOS Children's Villages Canada will obtain consent directly from the individual concerned at the time of collection. After having provided consent, an individual has the right to withdraw consent at any time by providing reasonable notice to the SOS Children's Villages Canada Privacy Officer.


By donating, sponsoring, volunteering or acting with us individuals consent to the collection and use of their personal information for the purposes identified in this Privacy Policy.


SOS Children's Villages Canada will not require you to consent to the collection, use or disclosure of personal information beyond that are required to provide services to you. If you wish to withdraw your consent or to opt out of the uses or disclosures of your information for the purposes identified in this Privacy Policy, you may do so by contacting our Privacy Officer. Because of Federal Law requirements once information about tax receipts is collected we can not delete this information until Federal Law permits this.


In limited circumstances, SOS Children's Villages Canada may use or disclose personal information without the knowledge or consent of the individual, for example, for purposes as required by governmental bodies acting with authority, or as authorized or required by applicable legislation.


Limiting Collection


SOS Children's Villages Canada collects only the information that is necessary for the purposes outlined in this Privacy Policy.


Limiting Use, Disclosure and Retention


SOS Children's Villages Canada collects, uses and discloses personal information only for purposes that a reasonable person would consider appropriate under the circumstances.


Personal information gathered by SOS Children's Villages Canada is kept in strict confidence. Certain staff members have authorized access to personal information based on their need to deal with the information for the reason(s) for which it was obtained.


SOS Children's Villages staff that may have access personal information are required to adhere to the Privacy Policy, and to sign an agreement indicating they understand and accept this commitment.


Safeguards are in place to ensure that the information is not disclosed or shared more widely than is necessary to achieve the purpose for which it was gathered. We also take measures to ensure that the integrity of this information is maintained and to prevent its being lost, stolen or prematurely destroyed.


Personal information collected since 2002 by SOS Children's Villages Canada has not been subject to donor list trading. We have guaranteed all new donors that we will not trade their personal information.


To help SOS Children's Villages Canada find new supporters and to operate our fundraising programs cost-effectively, we have traded a small segment of our direct mail donor list with other progressive and like-minded charities. This activity has been carried out solely with personal information collected prior to 2002. All donors, regardless of when their information has been collected have had an opportunity to decline and donors may opt out of this arrangement at any time. Donors and supporters will, from time to time, continue to be provided with a simple opt out option in order to maintain privacy.


Accuracy of Personal Information


Personal information is kept as accurate, complete and up to date as necessary for the purposes for which it is to be used. Individuals are encouraged to provide updates to their personal information as changes occur, to enable us to continue to provide services to them. The personal information of customers can be reviewed and modified by contacting us.


Safeguarding Personal Information


Personal information, whatever its form, will be protected by security safeguards appropriate to the sensitivity of the information. The safeguards will protect personal information against loss or theft, as well as unauthorized access, disclosure, copying, use or modification. The measures of protection include: 

  • physical measures, for example, locking filing cabinets and restricted access to offices; 
  • organizational measures, for example, security passes and limiting access to the personal information on a 'need-to-know' basis; 
  • technological measures, for example, the use of passwords and encryption; and 
  • procedural measures, for example, the shredding of sensitive personal information.




SOS Children's Villages Canada is committed to being open about its policies and practices with respect to the handling of personal information. Our Privacy Policy is available through our website. If a hard copy or additional information is required, requests for such information may be made to the Privacy Officer.


Access to Personal Information


Individuals may request a copy of their personal information held at SOS Children's Villages Canada by submitting a written request to the Privacy Officer at the address above. Acceptable proof of identification is required before such information is given out. If you feel the information we have about you is inaccurate, you may request that it be reviewed and, if inaccurate, changed, by contacting the Privacy Officer.


Challenging Compliance


An individual can challenge compliance with the above policy by providing written details of the challenge to the Privacy Officer.