Foundation for the Study of Processes of Government in Canada

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This profile originally appeared in the 2019-20 Giving Guide. Read the full magazine here.

The Foundation's mission is to offer innovative programming that engages youth in Canada's democratic process and its institutions, empowering youth for lifelong and meaningful civic engagement. While fostering their leadership skills, program participants have the opportunity to learn about government, democracy and citizenship, to meet various actors in the Canadian public sphere and to connect with other young people whose interests are similar to their own. They benefit greatly from the educational aspects of the programming, which is the primary objective of the Foundation. They become better-informed, more involved citizens, which in turn serves the Canadian public good.


At a glance

Year founded: 1975

Geographic region of focus: National

Total revenue for last fiscal year: $1,182,888

Top funding sources: 

  • Government funding: 41.01%
  • Corporate donations: 7.27%
  • Other charities: 2.07%
  • Individual donations: 1.65%
  • Other sources: 48%

How you can help


Through the Opportunity Fund, last year 91 students received bursaries totaling $60,000. Your donation removes barriers to participation and supports students from marginalized communities.

The participation fee is currently $995, yet the program now costs more than $2,350 per student to run. Your donation to the Forum Experience Fund helps subsidize student fees by 57 per cent.

Investments in infrastructure and technology are also needed to produce quality programming that engages today’s digitally-innate youth to maximize their Forum experience. Additionally, investments in administrative staff costs, communications outreach and training helps staff and volunteers succeed.


Participate by joining our volunteer board or become a member and sit on a committee. You can volunteer during the forum sessions or in the office year-round.

Office volunteers and logistics assistants work behind the scenes and are essential for the functioning of the Foundation and its programs! Group leaders support participants during Forum by facilitating group meetings, creating an atmosphere conducive to learning, stimulating curiosity and encouraging participation by all students.


Events and fundraising

Forum for Young Canadians: 

Non-partisan, bilingual and inclusive, Forum’s week-long program (three per year) allows more than 320 young people (aged 15-19) to experience Canada’s government in action in the nation’s capital. Young people travel to Ottawa to get a behind-the-scenes look at the workings of their democratic institutions. They gain a sense of belonging to Canada and a sense of connection to each other.

Forum Alumni Events: 

Over 24,000 Forum alumni hold leadership positions in every realm of public life as politicians, public servants, diplomats, lobbyists and policy analysts. The Foundation reconnects with Forum alumni through a variety of networking events.

Great Canadian Giving Challenge: 

This year’s June campaign, Growing our Forum Community One Leaf at a Time, raised more than $8,000. We shared inspiring stories of Forum’s youth leaders and all funds were valuable donations to our Forum Experience Fund. 

Giving Tuesday: 

A day dedicated to giving involving all of our programs. This year’s Giving Tuesday is on Nov. 27.

Board members and executives

Marie and Marlene
Executive director Marie-Michèle Laferrière (left); Chair of the board Marlene Floyd

Marlene Floyd
Chair (Microsoft)

Mike Abbott
Secretary-treasurer (Deloitte)

David Adams
Ontario director (Global Automakers of Canada)

David Coletto
Ontario director (Abacus Data)

Helaina Gaspard
Vice-chair (Institute of Fiscal Studies and Democracy)

Desiree McGraw
B.C. director (Pearson College)

Cynthia Wallace
New Brunswick director (Government of New Brunswick)

Get in touch

800-81 Metcalfe St.
Ottawa, Ont.
K1P 6K7

Twitter: @Forum4YC
Facebook: Forum for Young Canadians