Newsbytes

$10M donation to support a first-of-its-kind social innovation centre at Concordia University

November 13, 2019

A gift of $10 million from the Mirella & Lino Saputo Foundation and the Amelia & Lino Saputo Jr. Foundation will allow the creation of a first-of-its-kind multi-stakeholder collaboration centre at Concordia University. The new SHIFT Centre for Social Transformation will enable Concordia and its partners to drive and support community-based social transformation projects in Montreal, Quebec and Canada. The gift — among the largest in the university’s history — supports the Campaign for Concordia: Next-Gen. Now. SHIFT will unite academic knowledge, community-held expertise and entrepreneurial students. Together, they will develop sustainable and transformative solutions to complex societal challenges such as environmental degradation, political polarization, wealth inequality and a rapidly changing labour market. The centre will encourage and support individuals who are taking bold, creative and effective steps to build a stronger, healthier society.

Community investment gives corporations a decisive edge in the talent war: survey

November 13, 2019

The 2019 Corporate Community Investment Report from Imagine Canada, entitled Profit, Purpose and Talent: Trends and Motivations in Corporate Giving and Volunteering, shows conclusively that high levels of community engagement lead to long-term business advantages. The research underpinning the report included the opinions of 1,506 private sector employees and a survey of 65 leading Canadian corporations in community investment. Collectively, these corporations invested $592 million in communities over the past year. Key findings include:

  • 50% of employees surveyed say they considered their employer’s reputation for charitable and community work before accepting their position
  • 28% say they would be willing to take a pay decrease to work for a more socially responsible company

Among employees who believe their company is highly committed to community:

  • 84% are extremely or very satisfied with their job compared to 46 per cent among others
  • 59% say they are very likely to recommend their company versus 23 per cent among others
  • 47% strongly agree they share a common social purpose with their company compared to 16 per cent among other

The study also reveals high potential for growing employee giving. Among those working for companies with payroll deduction programs, employee donation matching and giving campaigns, 79% reported they donated to charity versus 47% among those with no workplace donation programs. As well, 76% of those surveyed say they now regularly support a charity they learned about at work.

BCG's Centre for Canada's Future releases new insights on diversity & inclusion in corporate Canada

November 13, 2019

BCG's Centre for Canada's Future launched a new report on diversity and inclusion (D&I) that examines the workplace experience of diverse employees in Canada. Beyond Good Intentions: Bringing an Employee Lens to Diversity & Inclusion in Corporate Canada, based on a survey of more than 5,000 employees, found that significant numbers of diverse employees still experience barriers to advancement and workplace bias. The survey revealed that one-third of women, LGBTQ2, people of colour, indigenous and disabled employees say they face persistent obstacles to recruitment, retention, and advancement. In addition, individuals from majority groups often fail to perceive the obstacles that diverse employees face. Overall, half of employees who identify with one or more diversity groups say that workplace bias remains a day-to-day reality. According to the survey, nearly half of diverse respondents say they see inconsistent commitment down through the managerial ranks. In addition, less than half of diverse employees say they have "allies" at work, individuals who actively support the inclusion and advancement of colleagues from diverse backgrounds.

Ontario Nonprofit Network releases report taking the pulse of Ontario's nonprofit sector

November 13, 2019

The Ontario Nonprofit Network (ONN) has released a new report, Sector 360° Survey: Taking the pulse of Ontario's Nonprofit Sector. This survey was open to nonprofits, charities, and nonprofit co-operatives with a mission to serve a public benefit, aimed specifically at executive directors and senior leaders. The survey was administered using an online platform for one month. A total of 447 people responded; however, not all respondents replied to all the questions. Responses show that across subsectors, organizations aren’t just worried about having their funding streams cut, but also the speed and uncertainty of the decision-making process, as well as the lack of information, details, and engagement with the sector by the provincial government. The responses from nonprofits underscore the challenges they face and the concern they have for the communities they serve.

One key finding is that nonprofits are now operating in a climate of growing uncertainty and volatility as a result of massive systems transformations confronting the nonprofit sector in Ontario. While budget cuts are deep, it’s the transformations and populations affected that concern nonprofits the most, including refugees, newcomers, children in after-school programs, individuals living on low incomes, and more. Key highlights from the survey:

  • 30 per cent of respondents said their budgets have decreased as a result of the provincial budget and policy changes
  • 50 per cent of organizations do not have the bare minimum of three months reserve funds
  • 23 per cent of organizations anticipate having to pay costs out of pocket as a result of the 2019 budget and related policy decisions
  • 28 per cent of organizations indicated that their sector is subject to a restructuring exercise, including health, child care, employment and training, community housing and arts.

However, amid anxiety and uncertainty, nonprofits remain optimistic and are making the most of opportunities.

TD helps nonprofits prepare for the future through data and analytics

November 6, 2019

This week, TD launched a new program called TD Mindpower: Analytics for Social Good, that helps nonprofit organizations leverage data and analytics to grow their community impact. The program pairs nonprofit organizations with a dedicated team of TD data and analytics employees who volunteer their time and skills to help organizations draw new insights from their data. The teams from TD work on a wide range of projects, including building data and analytics-powered dashboards, forecasting key trends and developing new methods for measuring, communicating and growing their community impact through data. Since the launch of the program pilot in the spring of 2019, TD data professionals have volunteered over 1,500 hours. TD Mindpower aligns with the company's citizenship platform, The Ready Commitment, where TD aspires to link its business, philanthropy and human capital to help people have opportunities to succeed.

New survey reveals struggling caregivers across Ontario need more support

November 5, 2019

Today, The Change Foundation and The Ontario Caregiver Organization (OCO) released the results of a province-wide survey on the experience of family caregivers in this province. The second annual "Spotlight on Caregivers" survey, conducted by Pollara Strategic Insights, builds on the inaugural 2018 report and for the first time demonstrates trends in the caregiver experience in Ontario.

One very important insight from last year's Spotlight report showed that an overwhelming majority of caregivers wanted one point of access for information. The new survey reinforced this with 77% of respondents saying they wanted one place to go for information and support. To address this need, the OCO announced today that it is launching a 24/7 caregiver helpline. The helpline will enable caregivers to speak to a Community Resource Representative 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling 1-833-416-2273 (CARE) or by live chat at ontariocaregiver.ca between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m., Monday – Friday. Whether caregivers are looking for respite care in their area, a support group, information about tax credits or more, there is now a dedicated resource just for them.

More than one-third of workers in Canada say their commute is stressful

November 5, 2019

In a new survey from global staffing firm Robert Half, more than one-third of professionals (35%) said travelling to and from work is stressful. In addition, 36% of respondents lamented that their trip to the office is too long, up from 28% in a similar 2017 survey. Professionals said they spend an average of 53 minutes commuting each day, and more than one-quarter (26%) stated their travel time exceeds one hour. In a separate survey, senior managers said their company offers flexible scheduling to avoid peak traffic times (37%) and telecommuting (30%) to help alleviate employees' stressful trips.

Deloitte research reveals significant return on investment for workplace mental health programs

November 4, 2019

First-of-its-kind Canadian research has found that positive returns on investment (ROI) of workplace mental health initiatives are within reach for Canadian businesses, according to a report released today by Deloitte Canada. Analysis reveals that companies with mental health programs in place for one year had a median annual ROI of $1.62 for every dollar invested. For companies with programs in place for three or more years, the median annual ROI is more than double—valued at $2.18 for every dollar spent. The report, The ROI in workplace mental health programs: Good for people, good for business, explores historical investment and savings data from seven large Canadian companies at various stages of rolling out mental health programs and supports. Key findings from the report include:

  • Wellness programs are more likely to achieve positive ROI when they support employees along the entire spectrum of mental health—from promotion of well-being to intervention and care.
  • Employers could achieve greater program ROI by prioritizing investing in higher-impact areas such as leadership training and preventive interventions, including psychological care benefits.
  • If employers measure their baseline data and take stock of existing initiatives, many organizations would realize they have already started to use the right tools to strengthen workplace mental health.
  • Putting in place mechanisms to measure performance can enable organizations to achieve desired program impact, improve adoption rates, and enhance decision-making.

Apply now for seed funding and partnership opportunities with Junior League of Toronto

November 4, 2019

The Junior League of Toronto (JLT) supports nonprofit organizations to deliver programs in the Greater Toronto Area. The JLT supports innovative programs by partnering with other nonprofit organizations on both short and long term projects and offering start up funding through Seed Grants to support new programs. If your organization is interested in partnering with the JLT on a community project, please email info@jlt.org for more information. Applications are accepted from November through February each year. The deadline for Seed Grants applications is February 14, 2020.

Canadians can vote for one of 10 charities to receive a $125,000 donation from iA Financial Group

November 4, 2019

iA Financial Group is calling on Canadians to vote for one of the ten charities that have qualified as finalists to receive the grand prize donation of $125,000 in the third edition of the company’s philanthropic contest. Hundreds of charities working in the health, education and social services sectors that provide respite to the loved ones of persons in need answered iA Financial Group’s call in September and entered the contest. A jury reviewed all projects received from across the country and chose ten finalists, for which you can now vote. The public has until November 29th to go to donations-contest.ia.ca and vote for the two projects they find most inspiring. Almost $300,000 will be distributed among the ten finalists, including a donation of $125,000 to the charity that receives the most votes, $50,000 each for second and third place, and $10,000 each for the remaining seven charities. The winners will be announced on December 12th.

Digital for Good™ Summit in Toronto a free event for charities to learn about technology

October 31, 2019

If you're part of a charity looking to improve their digital strategy, we have just the event for you! The Digital for Good™ Summit hosted by Capital One® is a free event for charity employees to meet and mingle, hear informative talks from diverse speakers, and participate in breakouts to dive deep into relevant topics all related to technology and building a digital strategy. Join us on Monday, November 18 at the Arcadian in Toronto. Click here for more details and to register. Questions? Contact digitalforgood@hackworks.com.

TD Financial Health Index finds 4 in 10 Canadians are financially struggling

October 29, 2019

Today, TD Bank Group unveiled the TD Financial Health Index, a national benchmarking survey providing a portrait of Canadians' financial well-being and a holistic look at how Canadians are managing their personal finances. The study reveals that while just over a quarter of Canadians surveyed are "financially healthy," 4 in 10 Canadians are struggling with some or all aspects of their finances. Key findings include:

  • Those who identify as LGBTQ2+ are on average, more likely to be financially vulnerable (20%) or financially coping low (30%). Within the LGBTQ2+ community, transgender women have the lowest financial health.
  • On average, women have lower reported financial health than men, particularly amongst younger cohorts. Women are less likely than men to feel confident in their ability to meet their long-term savings goals (41% vs. 49%), are less likely than men to have a high annual income (22% of men vs. 18% of women make $100,000+ a year), and are more likely than men to be employed part-time (11% vs. 8%).
  • Those who identify as a person with a disability have lower financial health than those who do not, and those with developmental disabilities and memory problems are affected the most. People with disabilities are more likely to live pay cheque to pay cheque and 4 in 10 will miss paying bills on time.

United Way is using augmented reality to imagine a new addition to the Toronto skyline

October 29, 2019

You can't solve a problem if you don't know it exists. The latest development in United Way's #UNIGNORABLE campaign intends to make everyone aware of how many people are struggling with poverty in the GTA -- and encourage you to tackle the issues that hold too many people back. Using augmented reality, the #UNIGNORABLE Tower is designed to make everyone aware of just how many people in the GTA are struggling. While the Tower isn't real, the problem it represents is: more than 116,000 individuals and families in Peel, Toronto and York Region are struggling to put a roof over their heads. Experience the Tower and see a part of the skyline you didn't know exists with United Way's #UNIGNORABLE Tower app. Get it on Google Play or download on The App Store. For an IRL experience, visit the #UNIGNORABLE exhibit in Brookfield Place from October 28 – November 8 to reimagine Toronto's skyline and explore the issue of poverty in the GTA. Visitors are encouraged to share their experience on social media using #UNIGNORABLE.

Canada named top nation for entrepreneurs doing good in global poll

October 29, 2019

Canada was named the best country for business leaders seeking to tackle social problems in a global poll, while the United States fell from top slot due to political uncertainty. Australia came second in the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s second global survey on the best countries for social entrepreneurs, seeing the biggest gain of 24 places from the inaugural poll in 2016, while France came third.

The 2019 poll found most experts, 82%, said social entrepreneurship was gaining momentum in their countries - although this was down three percentage points from 2016. Canada, Indonesia and South Africa were named as the top countries where social entrepreneurship was gaining momentum, while Mexico, the United States and China saw the biggest falls. Despite this, more than half of respondents - 54% - said the public still did not understand what they did which was not helped by the lack of a global definition of social enterprise.

Applications now open for Ontario Science Centre's 2020 Weston Youth Innovation Award

October 29, 2019

The Ontario Science Centre is now accepting applications for the 2020 Weston Youth Innovation Award, which honours young Canadian innovators who use science and technology in creative ways to find innovative solutions to real-world problems. Established in 2008, the annual award is funded by The W. Garfield Weston Foundation to support and encourage young people between 14-18 years of age to pursue science, technology and innovation in order to make a positive impact in the world. For the second year in a row, the award includes five cash prizes: $15,000 for first place, $8,000 for second place and $3,500 each for up to three finalists. Past winners have come from across Canada, honoured for innovative solutions to clean up raw sewage from contaminated waterways and monitoring vital signs of mass casualty victims, to using a smartphone to help people with visual impairments identify objects. The Ontario Science Centre will accept award submissions until February 7, 2020. An external jury will select the winners in April 2020. Detailed information about the Weston Youth Innovation Award, including past recipients, can be found at OntarioScienceCentre.ca/InnovationAward.

Donor control, conflict of interest and tainted money key ethical concerns for fundraisers

October 29, 2019

With the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) celebrating October as Ethics Awareness Month, the association conducted an online survey of its members earlier in the year to assess members’ awareness of AFP ethical resources, potential changes to its Code of Ethical Principles and which ethical issues were of most concern to members. The survey results show that long-standing issues such as donor control of gifts, conflict of interest and “tainted” money remain top ethical concerns for many fundraisers, but workplace issues, including sexual harassment and working with top executive staff, are important as well.

According to the survey, most members don’t have to address challenging ethical situations or dilemmas very often. Almost 50% of respondents said they typically face challenges or dilemmas once a year, while 23% reported they have never had to address such a situation, whereas close to 17% said roughly six times per year, and eight percent encountered challenges once a month. The survey did not specifically define what a “challenge” or “dilemma” was, so respondents may have different views of the situations they face.

From a list of common ethical challenges, respondents also identified ethical issues on which they need more guidance and resources. Donor control and restrictions on how gifts can be used was identified by almost half (48%) of respondents as a critical issue, followed by conflicts of interest (41%) and “tainted” money from donors (40%).

However, throughout the survey, several issues kept arising that members were interested in seeing AFP address through its Code of Ethics or through other means. These included sexual harassment, racial and gender bias, working with elderly donors, and online crowdfunding platforms.

Nearly 9 In 10 employees in Canada come to work sick, survey shows

October 24, 2019

In new research from global staffing firm Accountemps, 89% of professionals in Canada admitted they've at least sometimes come to the office with cold or flu symptoms. Of those respondents, 27% always go to work even when they're under the weather. More than half of those who report to the office with the cold or flu (54%) do so because they have too much work to do; another 33% don't want to use a sick day.

Funding available through Alberta Settlement and Integration Program

October 23, 2019

The Alberta Settlement and Integration Program, launched in January 2018, provides supports for newcomers as they settle and integrate into Alberta’s society. The program funds initiatives that contribute to the following outcomes:

  • newcomers have information about living and working in Alberta, and about access to services and opportunities that support their settlement and integration
  • organizations provide programs and services that help newcomers meet their settlement, integration and language needs
  • newcomers are welcomed and well-received within communities, workplaces and service organizations

Apply to have your project funded in one of 3 streams:

  • Building Community Receptive Capacity (up to $300,000)
  • Supporting Labour Market Integration (up to $300,000)
  • System Improvement (up to $400,000)

The deadline for applications is November 8, 2019.

Majority of managers in Canada say their staff are experiencing some degree of burnout

October 22, 2019

A recent survey from staffing firm Accountemps found that nearly all senior managers in Canada (96%) believe their team members are experiencing some degree of burnout. In a separate survey, 95% of Canadian workers said they are at least somewhat burned out. Senior managers were asked to report the level of burnout among employees on a scale of 1 (not at all burned out) to 10 (completely burned out), and the average was 5.7. One in five respondents rated their team’s burnout level 8 or higher. Workers cited an average burnout level of 5.6, with 22% of respondents falling within the 8 to 10 range. Workers and managers alike seem to agree burnout is an issue, but they don’t see eye to eye on the main reason. When given a list of factors that may be contributing to employee burnout, workers ranked constant interruptions and putting out fires first, while senior managers believed unmanageable workloads were the biggest issue for their teams.

Half of fundraisers likely to leave current position within two years

October 22, 2019

More than 80% of fundraisers are satisfied with many key aspects of their current job, yet half are likely to leave their position by 2021, according to a new survey by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and The Chronicle of Philanthropy conducted independently online by the Harris Poll. The survey, which queried more than 1,000 fundraisers across the U.S. and Canada including members of AFP, asked questions related to job satisfaction, fundraising support in the workplace, organizational culture, professional development and salaries and benefits.

The survey reveals a significant amount of tension and pressure in most fundraising jobs. Eighty-four percent feel tremendous pressure to succeed in their role, and more than half (55%) feel or have felt under-appreciated in their role. This pressure is one factor in leading to 51% of respondents indicating they are very or somewhat likely to leave their current job over the next two years. In addition, 30% of fundraisers reported they are likely to leave the fundraising profession altogether by 2021. The 2019 Report found that two-thirds of respondents looked for a promotion within their organization in 2018, while 26% sought opportunities at other charities or nonprofits. Salary, along with organizational, management, and leadership issues, are the most common reasons given for being likely to leave the profession, followed by workload.

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