Newsbytes

Stars of Alberta Volunteer Awards accepting nominations for 2015

August 26, 2015

The Stars of Alberta Volunteer Awards recognize extraordinary Albertans whose volunteer efforts have contributed to the well-being of their community and fellow community members. Six awards, two in each category of youth, adult and senior are presented annually on or around International Volunteer Day, December 5. The 2015 nomination form is now available and the deadline for submissions is Tuesday, September 15, 2015.

Share your #UpgradeYourWorld ideas for a chance to receive funding from Microsoft

August 25, 2015

To mark the launch of Windows 10, Microsoft announced that they will help 10 global and 100 local nonprofits achieve greatness by investing more than $10 million in cash and technology. Is there a park or a community centre in your neighbourhood that needs a makeover? A local playground that needs new equipment? Do you have a friend, teacher or colleague who devotes themselves to making the world a better place? Microsoft wants to hear about it. Here's how you get involved: Tweet @WindowsCanada or comment on Windows Canada Facebook using the hashtag #UpgradeYourWorld, and tell Microsoft about the people or groups in your community who are empowering others to do great things. Or join the conversation and explain how you would upgrade your world. Over the coming months, Microsoft will bring a few of these suggestions to life. The deadline for submissions is August 31, 2015.

GivingTuesday launches new charity toolkit for 2015

August 25, 2015

Planning to participate in GivingTuesday this December? GivingTuesday Canada has launched a new toolkit to help your charity make the most of this annual giving event. The GivingTuesday Toolkit for Charities includes background details and information on why you should consider participating, five steps to a successful campaign, how to access the resources you need and answers to frequently asked questions. In 2015, GivingTuesday takes place on December 1.

Help green your city this fall with TD Tree Days

August 25, 2015

This September and October, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation (TD FEF) is inviting Canadians to roll up their sleeves and help green where they live by volunteering at TD Tree Days. According to recent research from TD FEF, protecting existing green spaces (56%) and creating new ones (51%) are priorities when it comes to urban greening initiatives. Canadians polled strongly believe that these spaces are an important legacy for children and future generations (67%), important to the health of the community (61%), and help enhance economic value of the area (51%). Now in its sixth year, TD Tree Days is a grassroots community tree planting program. As TD's flagship volunteer program – and part of TD Bank's TD Forests program – TD Tree Days provides TD employees and their families, customers and community partners the opportunity to support local environmental stewardship. In the last five years, thousands of volunteers have planted over 185,000 trees from coast to coast through TD Tree Days. To see if there is a TD Tree Days planting in your community or for more information, visit tdtreedays.com.

Toronto Foundation's 16th Vital Signs Report exposes pervasive inequity among citizens

Released today, Toronto Foundation's 16th Toronto's Vital Signs Report reveals the extent to which inequity infiltrates all aspects of life in the city. For the first time in its history, the report uses an equity lens to disaggregate data and paints a clear picture that quality of life in Toronto varies drastically depending on neighbourhood, income, race, immigration status, gender, sexual identity, and age. The report also gives Torontonians concrete, actionable steps to be part of ending inequity in the city. Some general facts highlighted in the report:

  • The middle income range is between $24,000 and $42,000. This is the middle class in Toronto. This group saw income gains of just 6% over ten years while the top fifth of earners experienced a 9% increase.
  • The number of residents living on low income has grown to 20% of the population, and the average real employment increase for this cohort was 6% from 2005-2015, while the top fifth of all earners saw an increase of 9%.
  • For the first time, there are more seniors than children in Toronto and the most common household type (replacing couples with children) is people living alone.
  • For the first time, more than half identify as belonging to a visible minority.
  • Toronto is a thriving global centre. The population has grown to more than 2.7 million (up 4.5% between 2001 and 2016).

The 2017/18 Toronto's Vital Signs report concludes with a bold call to action (page 75) to use the report to spark dialogue, inform upcoming voting decisions and disrupt charitable giving patterns. The full report can be read here.

Toronto Foundation's 16th Vital Signs Report exposes pervasive inequity among citizens

Released today, Toronto Foundation's 16th Toronto's Vital Signs Report reveals the extent to which inequity infiltrates all aspects of life in the city. For the first time in its history, the report uses an equity lens to disaggregate data and paints a clear picture that quality of life in Toronto varies drastically depending on neighbourhood, income, race, immigration status, gender, sexual identity, and age. The report also gives Torontonians concrete, actionable steps to be part of ending inequity in the city. Some general facts highlighted in the report:

  • The middle income range is between $24,000 and $42,000. This is the middle class in Toronto. This group saw income gains of just 6% over ten years while the top fifth of earners experienced a 9% increase.
  • The number of residents living on low income has grown to 20% of the population, and the average real employment increase for this cohort was 6% from 2005-2015, while the top fifth of all earners saw an increase of 9%.
  • For the first time, there are more seniors than children in Toronto and the most common household type (replacing couples with children) is people living alone.
  • For the first time, more than half identify as belonging to a visible minority.
  • Toronto is a thriving global centre. The population has grown to more than 2.7 million (up 4.5% between 2001 and 2016).

The 2017/18 Toronto's Vital Signs report concludes with a bold call to action (page 75) to use the report to spark dialogue, inform upcoming voting decisions and disrupt charitable giving patterns. The full report can be read here.

First known study examining how retirement affects charitable giving finds men and women give differently

A new report from the Women’s Philanthropy Institute is the first known scholarly research examining how retirement affects charitable giving. The study finds that while most households decrease their overall spending around retirement, they generally maintain charitable giving levels — but gender differences exist. Single women and married couples are more likely to give, give more and give more consistently than single men in the years surrounding retirement. Single women and married couples are also more likely than single men to volunteer at this time in their lives. Key findings from the report include:

  • Both men and women maintain their charitable giving after retirement, especially compared to other types of spending, which typically decrease at this stage in life.
  • Around retirement, single women and married couples are more likely to give and give more than single men. These gender differences are consistent with patterns seen both before and after retirement.
  • Around retirement, giving by single women and married couples is more stable than giving by single men. Single men’s likelihood of giving and amount of giving varies widely from year to year, compared to single women and married couples.
  • Around retirement, single women and married couples are more likely to volunteer, and their likelihood of volunteering is more constant over time, compared to single men.

Solve your organization’s research challenges with expertise from SFU’s Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences

The collaboration between SFU FASS and Mitacs facilitates and funds research relationships between SFU graduate students and community partners in the nonprofit and corporate sectors. Mitacs is a national, not-for-profit organization that has designed and delivered research and training programs in Canada since 1999. Working with 60 universities, thousands of partner organizations, and both federal and provincial governments, Mitacs builds partnerships that support industrial and social innovation in Canada. Funding through Accelerate – Mitacs’ flagship program – starts at $15,000 for four months and can scale up from there. Accelerate applications are open to participants in all disciplines and sectors, and are accepted at any time. SFU’s Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences features 315 faculty members and over 700 graduate students, conducting cutting-edge, community-relevant research in 16 departments, 10 programs, and a language institute.

One-on-one support for finding the person to provide the skills and research you need is available from Drs. Allison Brennan, Director, Business Development at Mitacs, and Sean Zwagerman, Associate Dean, SFU Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences. Please contact sean_zwagerman@sfu.ca with your questions, opportunities, or research needs.

Government of Canada announces nomination of co-chairs to Advisory Committee on the Charitable Sector

The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue, announced the nomination of Hilary Pearson and Bruce MacDonald as co-chairs of the newly created permanent Advisory Committee on the Charitable Sector (ACCS). The ACCS will provide recommendations to the Minister of National Revenue and the Commissioner of the Canada Revenue Agency on important and emerging issues facing the sector. The government implemented important legislative changes to the rules governing the political activities of charities in December 2018 to respond to many of the recommendations of the Report of the Consultation Panel on the Political Activities of Charities. This announcement marks the government’s final response to this report. As stated in May 2017, this response lifts the suspension on the remaining audits and objections under the political activities program. The new rules on public policy dialogue and development activities, passed into law on December 13, 2018, will apply retroactively to the remaining audits and objections.

Bell Let's Talk supports Indigenous mental health programming at Behavioural Health Foundation

Bell Let's Talk announced a donation of $240,000 to the Behavioural Health Foundation (BHF) to support Indigenous programming as a core component of holistic residential treatment for adults and families affected by addictions and co-occurring mental health issues. Indigenous healing at BHF incorporates a wide range of culturally-relevant programs including naming and healing ceremonies, full moon and pipe ceremonies, spring, summer, fall and winter ceremonies, sweat lodges, women's sweats, grieving sweats, medicine picking, drumming, traditional teachings, sharing circles, Ghost Dance, and Sundance, as well as mentoring, traditional counselling and support for adults and families. Traditional programming offers meaningful help to those members of the community who, for many reasons, are not comfortable or well-served by mainstream therapy.

Over a quarter of Canadian men fear discussing mental health at work could risk their job

One in four Canadian men (28%) fear their job could be at risk if they discussed their mental health at work, according to new research by Movember. The study, conducted by Ipsos MORI, surveyed 1,000 Canadian men aged between 18 and 75. It found that 42% of men would be worried about colleagues making negative comments behind their backs if they discussed mental health issues at work. A further 33% of men think they could be held back from promotion at work if they mentioned a problem that they were finding it difficult to cope with. The majority of Canadian men are aware of the availability of mental health days in their workplace, with just over half (54%) of employed men said they would be able to take time off work, if they were struggling with their mental health or other personal issues. However, this research shows that stigma surrounding mental health is still preventing men from talking about their problems and seeking help when they need it.

Canadian men between the ages of 18-34 say they still feel under pressure to "man up"

Over 50% of Canadian men aged 18-34 have avoided talking out about their problems for fear of being seen as less of a man, according to a new report released today by Movember, coinciding with World Mental Health Day. The study, "Perceptions of Masculinity & The Challenges of Opening Up" is based on research commissioned by Movember and carried out by Ipsos MORI which surveyed 4,000 adult males aged between 18-75 across Canada, the USA, the UK and Australia. Despite significant awareness that talking openly is an effective way of dealing with problems, findings indicate that younger men in particular are reluctant to do so. In fact, nearly half (44%) of Canadian men aged 18-34 say they feel pressure to be manly, compared to 16% of men over the age of 55.

Nearly one in ten (8% Canadian respondents say they "always" or "frequently" change their behaviour in order to appear more masculine, while 7%of Canadian men reported that they are "always" or "frequently" mocked for not being manly enough. Just under half (45%) of Canadian men surveyed regret opening up about their problems and nearly half of these men said the experience would prevent them from doing so again. On a positive note however, more men report having had a positive experience (51%) than a negative one (31%) when they have talked openly with others about a problem. The research also indicates nearly a third of Canadian men (29%) say they felt under pressure to behave in a masculine way, with 59% believing that society expects them to be 'emotionally strong' and to not show weakness.