Re-framing poverty as a matter of rights

This article is the first in a series on Poverty and Human Rights in Canada. SUMMARY: This introductory article by guest editor, Elizabeth McIsaac of Maytree, provides an overview of the strategies and policies for rights-based poverty reduction in Canada beginning with the need for common language and goals. Referring to the International Covenant on…

A data partner for the sector

Ottawa has become a source of optimism and opportunity for the nonprofit sector. It’s worth re-reading that sentence and thinking about how different the situation was a few months ago. In the wake of controversial charity audits and questionable funding announcements, the relationship between the sector and the federal government was tense and lacking in…

A Chilly Time for Charities: Audits, Politics and Preventing Poverty

This article is the eighth in a series on Canadian Charities Working Internationally. SUMMARY: In this opinion piece, Philanthropist editor Gordon Floyd takes a look at the recent flurry of charity audits by CRA’s Charities Directorate and notes that many have been of charities, such as environmental groups, whose views are at odds with those…

Do Canada’s internationally focused charities operate in an enabling environment?

This article is the fourth in a series on Canadian Charities Working Internationally. SUMMARY: Julia Sanchez, president and CEO of the Canadian Council for International Cooperation, outlines the three basic elements of an enabling environment for international charities: dialogue to include organizations in designing and implementing development processes; funding to allow them to play diverse…

The Problems with Direction and Control

This article is the second in a series on Canadian Charities Working Internationally. ABSTRACT: Canadian charities working internationally are subject to regulations that are intended to boost accountability and ensure that charitable dollars flow to genuinely charitable activity. Recently the Canada Revenue Agency has stepped up audits of these same charities. Increased accountability demands are…

Collective Impact: Venturing On An Unfamiliar Road

Summary: In 2010 Hilary Pearson wrote in The Philanthropist about the emerging trend of creating Funder Collaboratives to address the challenges of the 2008/2009 economic downturn. In this update, Pearson looks at the emergence of Collective Impact from a funder’s perspective, exploring whether this new approach can help address perennial questions of effectiveness and impact and…

The Promise And Peril Of Collective Impact

Summary: On the one hand, Collective Impact is deceptively simple: a clearly defined framework with three pre-conditions and five conditions and a growing body of experience about how such an approach can effectively address complex social issues. But as is often the case, the devil is in the details, and Liz Weaver provides a detailed analysis…

Evaluating Collective Impact: Five Simple Rules

Summary: Since the 1960s, the field of evaluation has struggled to develop concepts and methods that are useful for the complex work of community change. The ambitious nature of the latest iteration of community change approaches, Collective Impact, amplifies this challenge. This article describes five simple rules that have emerged out of 50 years of trial…

Innoweave And Collective Impact: Collaboration Is Just The Beginning

Summary: Innoweave, an award winning collaborative capacity building program designed and delivered by J.W. McConnell Family Foundation, SiG, and over 150 partners from all sectors across Canada, has added new workshops and resources to help groups of community organizations develop Collective Impact initiatives. Drawing from this experience, the authors describe why Innoweave added a Collective Impact…