Audit Services Invitation to Tender

The Clayoquot Biosphere Trust Society (CBT) is requesting tenders from qualified firms of public accountants to audit the financial statements of the CBT for the year ending December 31, 2021, and if a contract is assigned for each fiscal year ending during that period.

Any inquiries concerning the request for tenders should be directed to Rebecca Hurwitz, Executive Director. 

The tender must be received by Rebecca Hurwitz at PO Box 67, Tofino BC, V0R 2Z0 or electronically at by 4:30 pm on Friday, November 19, 2021. Those presented will be evaluated by a special committee selected by the Board of Directors of the Society. 

It is anticipated the selection of a firm will be completed by Thursday, December 9, 2021.  Download a PDF of this Audit Services Invitation to Tender Document

1) About the CBT 

The Clayoquot Biosphere Trust (CBT), designated under the UNESCO Biosphere Program, was incorporated under the Society Act (British Columbia) to provide support for local projects related to increasing local capacity, knowledge, participation and innovation through research, education, and training initiatives for the sustainable development of the Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Region in 2000. The society is registered under section 149(1)(j) of the Income Tax Act (Canada) and is exempt from income taxes.  

The CBT is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors, currently comprised of up to 10 Primary Directors, and up to 9 Alternate Directors which normally meets 7 times per year. 

2) Financial Position 

In 2000 CBT received a $12 million endowment fund (Canada Fund) which was provided by the Government of Canada. Pursuant to the Canada Fund Agreement dated May 5, 2000, the Canada Fund is legally obligated to maintain the equivalent level of the original $12 million over its life including annual cost-of-living adjustments for inflation. As of December 31, 2020, the Canada Fund Investment was valued at $17,717,775. 

Income from the Canada Fund is also the main source to support CBT programs and initiatives, aside from grants, and financial agreements with program partners. The annual operating budget is approved by the board of directors as part of the strategic/business planning process. Over the past decade, the operating budget has increased as the Canada Fund, and the capacity and programs of the CBT, grew from $590,450 in 2010, to $1,245,140 in 2020. 

As a community foundation, the CBT works with donors to create a diversity of endowment funds. As of 2020, the CBT administers nine funds with a total fund balance of 1,260,422 as of Dec 31, 2020. 

All endowment funds are managed by Vancouver-based Genus Capital Management and is invested using a fossil fuel free mandate. Genus meets regularly with the CBT’s investment committee, industry specialists who volunteer as CBT investment advisors. 

Audited financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2020, and other governing documents can be found on the CBT website ( 

3) Nature of services required and Key dates 

The CBT Board and Management desire the auditor to express an opinion on the fair presentation of the general-purpose financial statements in all material respects. The audit shall be performed in accordance with generally accepted auditing standards as set forth by the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants. The CBT follows Canadian accounting standards for not-for-profit organizations and uses Community Suite fund accounting software to prepare financial statements and to report on their various funds. 

Following the completion of the audit of the fiscal year’s financial statements, the auditor shall issue a report on the fair presentation of the financial statements. 

The auditor shall also communicate in a letter to management an evaluation of internal control and areas of concern or weaknesses encountered during the audit, as well as recommendations for improvement. 

Key dates: 

  • Financial year end – December 31st 
  • Submission of year-end financial reports and supporting documentation to auditor – mid-February 
  • Completion of field work – mid-March 
  • Delivery of draft audit report and draft financial statements, management letter and post audit report – late March/early April 
  • Presentation of audit report and findings to CBT board – late April 
  • Presentation of audit report and findings at AGM – late May 

4) Tender Format and Process 

The format and content of the tender submission is left to the discretion of the invited firm but must, as a minimum, address the requirements below. 

  • License to perform audits from the Public Accounting Board of British Columbia. 
  • A commitment for providing reasonable annual continuity of experienced and qualified personnel. 
  • A commitment to meeting all reporting deadlines. 
  • The resources available to address the scope of the audit services required. 
  • Not-for-profit sector experience and expertise. 
  • An efficient approach to the audit, including an annual review of internal controls. 

Selection of a suitable audit firm for appointment as auditor will be based upon the following criteria which should specifically be addressed in the tender submission: 

  • Provide a brief description of your firm. 
  • Describe your experience in auditing not-for-profit or charitable organizations. 
  • Provide names, qualifications and bios of personnel who would be assigned to the CBT, and where they would be located. 
  • Provide a description of your approach to the audit and any special conditions. 
  • Provide an estimate of the anticipated hours, broken down by individual to be assigned or by responsibility level. 
  • Provide the names of three references who we may contact. 
  • Please detail all fees, including expenses, associated with the services being proposed.  


Proposals can be mailed to Clayoquot Biosphere Trust, Rebecca Hurwitz, PO Box 67, Tofino BC, V0R 2Z0 or send electronically to 

Deadline for submission is 4:30 pm on Friday, November 19, 2021 

Note that in the selection process the lowest tender in terms of all-inclusive maximum cost will not necessarily be accepted. 

Join our team as an At-Large Director

September 24, 2021
The CBT is seeking expressions of interest in a 4-year volunteer term as Alternate At-Large Director. The CBT exists to support research, education and programs that advance conservation, the understanding of natural processes in the marine and terrestrial ecosystems and that promote the health of individuals and communities in the Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Region. The CBT relies on the vision and strategic direction of a committed Board of Directors representing a diversity of experience, skills and interests supportive of the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere designation.

2021 Discretionary Grants

August 6, 2021
Every year, the CBT provides small project funding (up to $5,000) in the following four areas: Research and Environment, Community Development, Arts and Culture, and Youth and Education. Each granting stream is built upon different funding priorities and overseen by its own Advisory Committee comprised of 12-15 local volunteers with interest and expertise relevant to the specific grant.

2021 Youth Action Grants

July 21, 2021
Our Youth Action Grants are one of the ways we fulfil our priority of Empowering Youth in the region. This is our 7th year offering youth-led grants and we are always inspired by the creative projects and their beneficial ripple effects in the community.

New Nelly Heyduck Art Collaboration

July 2, 2021
Nelly Heyduck has created a beautiful new print depicting our biosphere region in recognition of the 20th anniversary of the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere designation.

Announcing the 2021 Vital Grant Awards

June 24, 2021
Our Vital Grant program began in 2018 with the goal to address regional priorities and complex challenges influencing sustainability in the Clayoquot Sound Biosphere Region. These $15,000-20,000 grants support meaningful collaboration between organizations, communities and cultures and must include a minimum of two project partners. This year, the CBT also reviewed Vital Grant applications with an equity lens by considering whether projects addressed regional social and health inequities.

2021 Biosphere Research Award

June 14, 2021
We are so pleased to share the details of Strawberry Isle Marine Research Society’s project funded by our Biosphere Research Award for 2021!

Announcing the Spring 2021 Responsive Neighbourhood Small Grants

May 14, 2021
We’re thrilled to announce the project funded by CBT’s spring 2021 Responsive Neighbourhood Small Grants! These grants are designed to help us foster connection in our communities during the pandemic when many of us can feel isolated and vulnerable. When we feel a sense of belonging in our community, we're more likely to be engaged in activities that make it a better place to live.

Holiday Giving Catalogue raises over $42K for regional charities

January 13, 2021
Over the month of December, the CBT worked alongside 20 local charities to raise funds for our most critical needs. Donors answered the call to stand together to strengthen our communities and ecosystems and together we raised $42,675. These gifts of all sizes will have a collective impact in a region that means so much to us all.

Emergency Community Support Fund Round 2

December 14, 2020
As the social and economic implications of the pandemic continue, community-serving non-profits are struggling to keep up with the increased need for responsive services and programming while facing significantly lower revenues than typical years. The CBT is proud to announce 5 diverse community projects receiving $30K in funding from Round 2 of the Emergency Community Support Fund (ECSF) from the Government of Canada, via the CBT. In total, $70K has been granted from the ECSF. Check out the list of organizations and projects who have received funding here!

Responsive Neighbourhood Small Grants: a show of west coast community resilience

August 19, 2020
We’ve wrapped up our COVID-19 Responsive Neighbourhood Small Grants (R-NSG) and couldn’t be more proud of our west coast communities! The 4 months since we launched the program have been a wild and unpredictable ride, but west coasters have come together to support each other— while maintaining physical distancing— in many inspiring and innovative ways.

CBT collaborates on a new SDG Guidebook

August 13, 2020
This week, Community Foundations of Canada launched a Guidebook and Toolkit to help Canada's 191 Community Foundations—and all the communities they support—find bolder, creative and innovative ways to meet the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. CBT research director, Laura Loucks, helped author a case study on p. 29 about our organization's dual role as a community foundation and UNESCO Biosphere Region.

We've met our Giving Catalogue fundraising goal

July 2, 2020
On Giving Tuesday Now (May 5th) CBT launched the Community COVID-19 Response Giving Catalogue, a place where west coast registered charities and not-for-profits share current and emerging needs with people who want to help. We are excited to announce that we have met our $30,000 for local organizations!

Red dresses in the office window

June 30, 2020
If you walk by the CBT office at 316 Main Street later this week, you may notice the red dresses hanging in the front window. The simple and elegant dresses are adorned with black silhouetted feathers and bring awareness to the staggering amount of missing or murdered Indigenous women and girls (MMIWG) across Canada, but especially those from our community.