04/14/2015 02:31 EDT | Updated 06/22/2015 09:59 EDT

Canadian Toy Testing Council closes doors after 63 years

A non-profit organization that has been testing toys for children since 1952 has shut down after members were unable to secure financial backing.

The Canadian Toy Testing Council has been putting toys to the test since 1952 through a network of families in the Ottawa region who would take the toys home and judge them on design, durability, safety and playability.

The group also produced an annual pre-Christmas list of top toys and books.

But last year the volunteer-run organization did not operate its toy testing program or produce its annual list because of what it described as funding challenges.

In a news release Tuesday, the organization said it had been under financial stress for several years.

Canada Revenue Agency filings for the council show the organization's revenue was cut in half from 2011 to 2012, to $52,328 from $98,743, and the group could not recover. The council reported revenue of $46,101 in 2014.

The group received some funding from the federal government and brought in revenue from toy sales, but after 2011 the organization lost a major sponsor, according to a posting on the crowd-funding website Aviva, and with it about $45,000 a year. 

"Over the past year, as part of our efforts to secure operational funding, we engaged an experienced funding consultant who conducted an exhaustive search of opportunities for funding, partnership and support," the group wrote in a statement on its website.

"Members of the board and other CTTC supporters also pounded the pavement in search of backing that would enable us to keep our doors open and our program running. Unfortunately, our efforts were not successful."

The council's board voted to dissolve the organization in March.

A final toy sale will be held on April 18 between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. at 1973 Baseline Rd. in Ottawa.