Nonprofit Driven 2016
October 19 – 20 | Allstream Centre, Toronto
Nonprofit Driven 2016 was one of our most vibrant gatherings of
nonprofit leaders – close to 500 people joined us!
We were proud to increase the diversity of voices in speakers and participants,
something that’s very important to ONN and our network.
Thank You To Our 2016 Sponsors
The #npdriven16 Storify
The 2016 Action Shots
Highlights From The Sessions
Our speakers gave us incredible content, sharing their expertise and perspectives on a wide range of topics important to the sector. Whether you were there in person, or want to find out what happened, here are summaries of each session, with highlights and some key learnings.
Fundamentals Pre-Event | October 19
ONN: We’ve got your back.
Those who were new to the sector, new to the network, or just wanted a refresher, learned about the essentials of ONN: what we do, our theory of change and ways of working, and key areas of focus.
What are networks?
Working across multiple organizations? Dealing with complex issues? At the pre-event, our Fundamentals day delegates discovered and tested ways to lead in networks.
Liz Rykert, President of Meta Strategies
- Download the slides
- Worksheet: try mapping out a network of your own!
- Network Weaver – weaving smart networks
How nonprofits can help make better public policy
Nonprofits play a unique role in bridging community issues and government policies. In this presentation, Noah Zon defined what public policy is, the life cycles and decisionmaking structures of policy, and the many different roles that nonprofits can play. Noah provided examples of how nonprofits have championed public policy change, and how organizations can further advocate for change that benefits society.
Noah Zon, Director of Policy and Research at Maytree
Nonprofit Driven Main Event | October 20
What is our sector’s role in driving policy change to address society’s biggest challenges?
Today, we face unprecedented challenges: climate change, labour market transformation, youth unemployment, truth and reconciliation, poverty and the income gap, among many more. However, these challenges can be transformed into opportunities, and the nonprofit sector often takes for granted the role we play in creating solutions for a better tomorrow. Together, we are strong; the power of our collective voice and our ability to convene the voices of others helps us create positive impact in our communities.
Four compelling sector leaders brought their unique and rich perspectives to consider our sector’s role.
Kehinde Bah, Youth Action Network
Jessica Bolduc, 4Rs Youth Movement
Allan Northcott, Max Bell Foundation
Chris Ramsaroop, Justicia for Migrant Workers
Nonprofit Driven Lightning Round
Nonprofit Driven 2016 wrapped up with a lightning round of insights and learnings from the day from three nonprofit leaders: Daniel Moore of Connect the Sector, Karen Madho of DeafBlind Ontario and Catherine Abreu of Climate Action Network Canada, led by Daniele Zanotti, President and CEO of United Way Toronto and York Region. Daniele reminded the sector that it only takes one “I” to go from “united” to “untied.”
ONN commissioned a poem by spoken word artist David Delisca, which inspired the crowd to think of their roles as individuals and as a sector to work together and amplify the voices of communities.
Horizons | Strategies | Tactics
Sessions were organized into three streams: Horizons, Strategies, and Tactics. From big picture thinking, to strategies playing out right now, to skills and tools for the work nonprofits do every day, Nonprofit Driven had something for all levels of leadership.
These sessions were focused on the big picture, the deep questions, that affect the future of our sector and our role in society. To lead effectively, sometimes we need to be thinking 5, 10, 20 years out: Why are we engaged in an area of work? What change do we want to see? What proactive approaches do we need to take to make change happen? What analysis is key?
The nonprofit sector can act as a champion for working conditions that bolster our ability to play a vital role in our communities. This focuses on the power of our sector as an employer, including the labour market challenges as a sector, such as attraction, career path opportunities, retention, and more. Speakers stressed the need to include stable employment opportunities that offer health benefits, pensions, fair income, equality and work-life balance. Nonprofit staff, boards, and funders need to galvanize around the movement, practicing with employees the kinds of things we want to do with our communities.
As ONN’s partner on the Atkinson Foundation funded ChangeWork project, the Toronto Neighbourhood Centres has developed a draft “Decent Work Charter”, a statement of aspirational intention, for Board members to sign onto. Its “Decent Work Checklist” includes samples of what good practices could looks like, while serving as a discussion tool for staff and boards. The Ottawa Art Gallery used their capital growth and business planning as opportunities to strengthen workplace democracy and leadership building. At St. Stephen’s Community House, the acknowledgement that 80% of budget was spent on salaries sparked a conversation with their board about good employment practices.
Alexandra Badzak, Ottawa Art Gallery
Howard Green, St. Stephen’s Community House
Rob Howarth, Toronto Neighbourhood Centres
Lisa Lalande, The Mowat Centre
In other countries, innovative practices such as data labs, integrated data systems, and information sharing environments are enabling effective evaluations of social programs. The key challenges in data collection are privacy concerns, technological and resources constraints and cost (e.g. customized reports from Statistics Canada), but there are ways to creatively get around these constraints.
Unique collaborations are happening between nonprofits, researchers and connectors. Intermediaries often play a key role. Several efforts are underway in Canada (the Social Research and Demonstration Corporation, Public Economics Data Analysis Lab) and internationally (New Philanthropy Capital in UK and J-PAL worldwide). With New Philanthropy Capital, UK, funders are setting up capacity building. They have four data labs focusing on several issues such as employment, housing, etc., and keep track of any technical issues and international trends. Another organization, J-PAL, helped connect nonprofits to a data lab in Chicago to set up different data sharing systems to study the impact of education and other factors on crime.
Ben Liadsky, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Laura Feeney, J-PAL North America
Michael Lenczner, Powered by Data and Ajah
Canada is actively building collective knowledge about the true shared history with our Indigenous peoples, language, identity, and nationhood. Participants in this session learned how language can strengthen relationships with First Nation, Métis and Inuit peoples. The conclusion? There isn’t one direct answer. The key to reaching the ‘right’ language is through building relationships, listening to, and asking individuals what language means to them.
Nonprofits can be intentional about engaging Indigenous voices at the table throughout public benefit work. For example, land acknowledgement as a good start, but the relationship building needs to continue (note: Inuit peoples do not use land acknowledgment). As nonprofits, we must keep in mind that “Reconciliation is a Canadian issue, not an Aboriginal problem.”
Victoria Grant, Governing Circle with the Circle on Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada
Bruce Lawson, The Counselling Foundation of Canada
Jessica Bolduc, 4Rs Youth Movement
In recent years, the intensity and emergency of the Syrian refugee crisis has been met with an outpouring of support. Civil society wanted to help but didn’t know what it meant or what it would be like, so nonprofits nonprofits often acted as collaborators for settlement. What resulted was a truly networked approach with all levels of government, the Canadian public, private sponsors, and many nonprofit subsector (such as immigrant services, faith, recreation, housing, employment, social services, health, arts – just to name a few!). For any complex issue that nonprofits are tackling, we shouldn’t waste such opportunities to work across sectors.
So how can nonprofits sustain long-term support, civic engagement, and meaningful integration for refugees in our communities? The first way is to recognize that Canada has been welcoming refugees for years, and our work is never over. The second is to be adaptable with an equity lens. For example, consider the health needs, family structures, cultural, religious, and employment/education needs and values of those coming to Canada. Develop a supportive community system, that considers trauma (mental health), children and family, how we can include arts and culture in the conversation, and financing for jobs and education.
Mario Calla, COSTI Immigrant Services
Carolyn Davis, Catholic Crosscultural Services
Tim Jones, Artscape
The panel discussed the implications for our sector of the shifting landscape of public and private funding. In addition to navigating the shifting sands, nonprofits will need to work together with funders to change practices that do not allow nonprofits to stay on track with what they do and their ability to do it well.
Changes are happening at the sub-sectoral level (arts, employment/training, sports & recreation) that could have ripple effects and lessons learned across the entire sector. For instance, arts councils take an arms length approach, which allows for grant application assessment through peer juries. This keeps the communication continuous between the funder and the arts community, allowing for learning and experimentation. In employment and skills development, funding has been transformed into an outcome-based approach. There is hopes that this will eventually become impact-based, which has potential for long-term funding and long-term measurement of impact. In the sports sector there are efforts to develop a stronger working relationship between the sector and its ministry.
To accelerate the shift in emphasis from compliance reporting to accounting for results, the sector will need more robust systems to support data integration. Nonprofits are changing the conversation with government funders to focus on investments for public benefit. Like any ongoing relationship, the sector-funder investment relationship must be grounded in trust and address the long term horizon.
Zabeda Oumer-Haji, ONN
Susan Kitchen, Coaches Association of Ontario
Laura Starret, Program Manager, Community Living Toronto
Jini Stolk, Research Fellow, Toronto Arts Foundation, & ONN, past Chair
Sue Watts, Employment and Education Centre, Brockville
Our sector can shift evaluation so that it addresses questions that matter to nonprofits. We can create a system that makes it easier and more rewarding for organizations to do meaningful evaluation work as true partners with our funders.
The Ontario Treasury Board’s new Centre of Excellence for Evidence-based Decision Making is encouraging and compelling the use of evaluation across ministries and support ministries to access data for evaluation. The Lawson Foundation shared the concern that, once they are returned to funders, evaluations stay on the shelf. Thinking Rock Arts noted that community is the natural accountability driver for its organization, but also is cognizant of the need to incorporate the funder’s needs into evaluation.
Both stories and evaluation are needed. Stories give complexity to and bring home the data. However, some stories aren’t evidence-based and need to be accompanied by numbers and additional data. The province looks at the combination of stories and data.
Our sector needs trust and open conversations with funders and foundations, to incorporate evaluation into everyday work to make it easy, and to become increasingly aware of how evaluation gives purpose to continuous improvement.
Andrew Taylor, Taylor Newberry Consulting
Shannon Fenton, Centre of Excellence for Evidence-Based Decision Making, Treasury Board Secretariat
Marcel Lauzière, Lawson Foundation
Robin Sutherland, Thinking Rock Community Arts
These sessions were focused on strategies for the sector that are playing out right now. In some cases, we’re mid-game. What action is underway this year? What can we do to set up the next phase of strategy effectively, and see what’s coming down the field in the months ahead? What collective action might we need to take in the near future?
After years of research and advocacy, climate change strategies are rapidly rolling out across governments. With climate change happening now, this issue is not just for the environmental and scientific sectors, but is a widespread call for all of us to adapt and do our part for our people and planet. Participants explored how their nonprofits can direct energy to better understand and influence climate change policy and how they can collaborate to take action.
Environmental change will also result in huge public health benefits, and we do not need to sacrifice the environment or the economy. Since the scale of the problem is so massive, nonprofits can play a role by participating in generating solutions and communicating the outcomes of how we have organized society to be a part of idea building and work.
Kenora has observed first hand the effects of climate change. Its efforts to address this from a human perspective provides practices that any nonprofit can learn from. Nonprofits can collaborate with Indigenous communities, engage in grassroots activism, create or join community forums, work with other nonprofits, and help develop climate change policies at a regional level.
Keith Brooks, Environmental Defence
Teika Newton, Transition Initiative Kenora
Kim Perotta, Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment
In 2013, ONN’s “Shaping the Future” report identified benefits and pensions as a key component of our sector’s recruitment and retention challenge. Over the last year, ONN’s pensions task force has been developing recommendations for a pension plan for Ontario’s nonprofit sector.
Four members of the task force reviewed the continued need for a pension plan (even in the context of Canada Pension Plan enhancement) as well as the unique characteristics of the nonprofit sector that must be taken into account in designing a suitable plan — mostly small employers, a largely female workforce, a large number of contract employees, modest operational budgets, and lots of mobility within the sector. Task force members shared the results of a sector survey and their preliminary recommendations. A pension plan is needed that is accessible for small and large organizations (both unionized and non-unionized), that offers maximum benefits to employees within available budgets (by pooling risks and minimizing administrative costs), and that can minimize liability for boards. The task force is recommending a target-benefit pension plan that that should have nonprofit sector representation involved in its governance.
ONN’s Pensions task force will be releasing its formal recommendations for a sector-wide pension plan in December (subscribe to ONN’s newsletter for updates).
Liz Sutherland, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Jennifer Closs, Ontario DeafBlind Services
Iris Fabbro, North York Women’s Centre
Are nonprofits working together as effectively as they can to drive policy change? Our speakers emphasized that much of breaking down silos and working together comes down to equity and relationship building.
To identify partners for a common cause, nonprofits should value business and government collaborators as much as other nonprofits. Look at where the issue is taking place and who might be involved. Be intentional in reaching out to anyone you might consider to be a stakeholder. Most advocacy efforts take time and patience to work through while still building and maintaining relationships with stakeholders. Bring in beneficiaries early. Have multi-level participants and be flexible about your work plan to allow for more integration with others’ timelines and needs.
When it comes to harnessing the power of varied perspectives for collaborative advocacy, the tensions in power imbalances have to be acknowledged. Think about how to reframe the conversation so that everyone’s issues are addressed, decisions get made, and no one is left behind. Change language to meet people where they are. Starting with a common vision will help balance power and perspectives.
Valérie Assoi, South East Ottawa Community Health Centre and City for All Women Initiative
Celeste Licorish, Hamilton Community Foundation
Our working conditions have changed dramatically over the last generation, but the regulatory environment hasn’t kept pace. Ontario’s Changing Workplaces Review is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to change the game in providing a fair regulatory environment for the working world of the 21st century. Participants learned from a Ministry of Labour representative what the Review’s Special Advisors heard during public consultations, the issues and policy options considered that will inform their recommendations to government, and what this might mean for the nonprofit sector – our employers, our employees and those we serve.
Our working conditions have changed dramatically over the last generation, but the regulatory environment hasn’t kept pace. Ontario’s Changing Workplaces Review is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to change the game in providing a fair regulatory environment for the working world of the 21st century. Participants learned about results of the public consultations, the issues and policy options considered that will inform recommendations to government, and what this might mean for the nonprofit sector – our employers, our employees and those we serve.
The review’s Special Advisors heard: concerns from employers in the for-profit sector that the new legislation will interfere with their ability to compete in a global market that may not have the same limitations or standards as Ontario and over paperwork; concern from employee groups over the growth of unemployment and unpredictable part-time and self employment; and concern from employee groups about reinstatement of workers during strikes and the use of replacement workers.
The majority of submissions to the review were from the for-profit sector, with very few submissions from employers working in vulnerable sectors. The unique perspective of the nonprofit sector would be very helpful and informative. Minimum standards can help to shape and support the nonprofit sector’s conversation on decent work, making it crucial to hear from the sector.
Jenn Miller, Atkinson Foundation
Melissa Faber, Employment and Labour Policy Branch, Ontario Ministry of Labour
The word “commissioning” has many different definitions, but in the context of public policy it boils down to attempting to achieve the best possible outcomes for the end user in service delivery. Ontario shares a similar context to UK, Australia, and Scotland, including fiscal restraint, an aging population, and an increased focus on customer service and outcome-based service delivery. Commissioning could have major implications for Ontario’s social services, specifically procurement processes and how services will be funded.
Ontario is only just beginning to explore commissioning as a service delivery approach and is looking at other jurisdictions for lessons. The government is asking whether it should be the delivery agent, or whether someone else is as able or better able to deliver on results and to deliver more cost effectively.
Good commissioning looks at the root causes of issues, the outcomes we desire, the priorities, and what’s already happening on the ground and in organizations. It requires tremendous knowledge and expertise. The nonprofit sector needs to be at the table to help government make informed choices about service delivery modes and how to achieve results.
Marg Stanowski, Springboard
Lynn Eakin, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Marian Macdonald, Assistant Deputy Minister, Supply Chain Ontario, Ministry of Government and Consumer Services
Young nonprofit leaders are passionate, capable, and eager to take their place in the sector. Panelists from ONN’s Connect the Sector, a community of young professionals, engaged participants in a deep discussion about how the sector can better attract, retain, and advance the next generation of leaders.
Attraction: Many young people are asking: what is the value in this sector as opposed to the public or for-profit sectors? Research has shown the usual trajectory of young people in the sector follows the pattern of unpaid work, which leads to precarious paid work which then, if you’re lucky, leads to stable work. How can our nonprofit employers set up better working conditions? Develop realistic and meaningful job applications, roles, and expectations and be able to communicate the value of working in the sector to upcoming generations.
Retention: Young workers wanted more clarity around job expectations for themselves and those they report to. In addition, there is a disparity in wages from a privilege framework – the most diversity in organizations is usually found in the frontlines and gets less diverse in executive positions. Organizations need to be thinking about (and creating) a strategy around creating a work culture that reflects a more flexible work environment, collaboration and cooperation among all leaders, at any position.
Advancement: The sector should prepare its staff for bold and better opportunities that are reflected in the scope/definition of work and modest salary increases. Emerging leaders want a platform to show what they can do. They are increasingly interested in the larger strategic visions of the organizations they work for and want to be in positions that allow them be challenged and cultivated.
Michelle Baldwin, Pillar Nonprofit Network
Tom Abel, Connect the Sector
Emily Cordeaux, Imagine Canada
The federal landscape has shifted since last year – we have a new government with new mandates, many of which relate to nonprofits and charities. The Prime Minister officially acknowledged the importance of stopping the harassment of charities and his intention to review the whole framework that governs charities in Canada. This is unprecedented.
The government has a challenge: lots to do, limited resources, limited policy capacity, and constant turnover. As a sector, we must leverage our collective strength in a way that we haven’t done in recent memory. The new ministerial mandates provide a prime opportunity to rethink regulatory environments that support social good in this country and to communicate this through language and messages that resonate with decision makers, whatever their lens. We need evidence-based, thoughtful ideas, backed with rigorous government relations. Otherwise, policies that we need to move our sector forward will never get enacted.
We are a sector with smart ideas, that is a significant employer, and the federal government supports us and allows us to grow. These new mandate letters create a roadmap for areas of mutual interest, and it is essential that nonprofits hold our government accountable.
Pedro Barata, United Way Toronto & York Region
Bruce MacDonald, Imagine Canada
Hilary Pearson, Philanthropic Foundations Canada
The Partnership Project began in 2010 as a process to strengthen the relationship between the Ontario government and nonprofits. It was led jointly by the Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration and the Ontario Trillium Foundation. Since then, the voices of the nonprofit sector have grown in our influence over legislation, regulations, and policies affecting our sector. This session included delegates in a discussion about how we could grow this government-nonprofit relationship.
Some proposed ideas included better data and research on our sector, solution-building to regulatory surprises, and other barriers to growth, risk-taking and success. The discussion explored how we can work across ministries for a stronger policy environment for our sector and how we might engage in broader communications about the value of the nonprofit sector.
Cathy Taylor, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Rick Beaver, Citizenship Branch, Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration
Peter Elson, Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Community Prosperity, Mount Royal University
“Real costs” are the true costs of running a program, not just those “eligible expenditures” that a funder decides to support. They include a fair share of an organization’s core infrastructure a.k.a. “overhead.” The four panelists who spoke at this session are leaders in the movement to get beyond “the overhead myth,” ditch the pie charts, and start nonprofit-funder dialogues about the real costs of getting real outcomes in nonprofit programming.
Participants heard that leading foundations are increasingly recognizing that infrastructure costs are critical for nonprofits to operate sustainably. These funders are changing their practices to allow for budget flexibility and cover true costs. Grant agreements for (narrowly-defined) program-only costs destabilize the core of the organization. Underfunded programs create a gap, which leads to ineffectiveness in driving impact within the community. When funders and nonprofits engage in conversations about real costs, it can move the narrative from a “rations-based” approach to one which recognizes core organizational infrastructure as a critical component of impact.
To move forward we need to engage in a dialogue with funders, to share data about true costs and the stories about how infrastructure drives impact. Nonprofits should not be shy about asking funders to cover their true costs rather than trying to cover the shortfall in other ways. At the same time, as demonstrated by efforts at United Way Toronto and York Region, funders can help support the results they want to see in communities when they welcome these conversations and look at ways to fund core operating costs, modernize reporting and support real outcomes.
Liz Sutherland, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Dan Kershaw, Furniture Bank
Betty Ferreira, ReStructure Consulting
Curtis Klotz, Nonprofits Assistance Fund
Debra Shime, United Way Toronto and York Region
These sessions were focused on the skills and tools for our individual organizations and sub-sectors. While policy and systems play out, we have work to do and decisions to make every day. How can we incorporate these trends and issues into the practical work we do?
The session looked at how organizations can measure their efforts to see if they have made a difference in their advocacy issues. The Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network helped participants work through a theory of action for policy advocacy, while sharing lessons that would require few resources.
A theory of change is a high level articulation of your goal, whereas a theory of action gives you a road map to get to the outcomes you want. Start with what you can do and find what works. One example of how HIV/AIDs Legal Network has monitored this was to have staff report back, using a form, on advocacy meetings that they went to. After this, they were better able to judge their opportunities and their resources and how to allocate them.
With clarity, a good understanding of the “state of play,” and a tailored theory of action, a nonprofit can better collaborate for change with its audience, influencers, and decision makers. Measuring, monitoring, and evaluation are critical at all steps in the advocacy process.
Sandra Ka Hon Chu, Canadian HIV/AIDs Legal Network
Kimahli Powell, Canadian HIV/AIDs Legal Network
It is rare for new ideas and insights to turn into successful programs on the first try. Failure happens. Using hands-on, interactive activities, the speaker engaged participants in a discussion of: How do we fail intelligently? How do we create space to build resilience and harness the productive potential of our failures? What does intelligent failure mean within an organization’s context? Participants engaged with their peers to foster ideas for dealing with failure productively and in ways that will align with their organization’s needs.
There are three levels of failure: (1) being courageous in creating the space to talk about failure, and initiating those conversations; (2) recognizing that “failing well” is a skill we are not taught, but it is a skill that can be built by paying attention to our language and rewiring our brains to think about failure from an objective learning experience; and (3) objectively looking at the lesson(s) learned from failure and applying the lessons to future endeavours.
There is both courage and vulnerability in sharing stories of failure, and through the process of examining failure we can gain great insights into our personal and professional lives, as well as that of our organizations. The audience shared personal stories of professional failure with an exercise that allowed them to retell the story in a productive, “failing forward” type of way. It was emphasized that the recognition of failure often means we are looking for ways to innovate and try out new things. Failure is a lesson and a way to keep growing.
Ashley Good, Fail Forward
The complexity of nonprofit sector challenges means that there are a lot of moving parts and many different stakeholders. Organizers from Civic Tech Toronto shared their experience with “hackathons” and how design thinking processes can be used to try out different things to achieve a desired outcome.
Hackathons allow you to produce results that are different from what you might expect, to collaborate on building things together, and to bring together smart, passionate, and diverse groups of people (individuals, students, nonprofits, the government, and tech companies). CivicTech Toronto has used the hackathon model, paired with elements of design thinking, to create a space for people to address civic issues and barriers.
Hackathons take time as you need everyone’s deep perspective and collaboration to solve an issue. To make your hackathon a success: use facilitators and content mentors to avoid groupthink; understand the scope and intention of what you’re trying to change; and have good wifi, a good venue, and good food!
Irene Quarcoo, Civic Tech Toronto
Anuta Skrypnychenko, Civic Tech Toronto
Jane Zhang, Civic Tech Toronto
Forces of nature can quickly change our cities. In Alberta, the Emergency Preparedness Initiative of Calgary brings together multiple stakeholders from the public and nonprofit sectors to collaborate on a model for better emergency response. Western Calgary’s major flood was unexpected, and the City shut down and 10% of the city was evacuated. Emergency preparedness and response was not part of the nonprofit or public sector mindset, even though the sector plays a key role responding and recovering from emergencies.
If your city or town issued a statement emergency, shutting down electricity and water, how prepared is your organization to continue operations? Each organization needs to have policies, alternative infrastructures. This is expensive so build capacity (resources, funding, etc.) and collaborations (networks and communication) between nonprofits to provide continuity of service during emergencies. While there is an increased community demand for client service and support during these times, nonprofits and the public sectors need to build up their capacity to deliver.
Michael Grogan, Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations
Evaluation can lead to meaningful action when there is trust and collaboration between partners and a focus on learning. However, it’s not always easy to have these conversations, particularly with funders.
This session worked through role playing scenarios with a goal to understand how we talk about evaluation with different stakeholders (see scenarios by downloading the slides below) and using the discussion guide as a framework for conversation. Test them out in your nonprofit and let us know what you think!
Remember, many funders wish to be responsive and transparent. However, learning and reflection can be hard when resources are thin. Nonprofits can overcome this by networking with others and thinking about how to approach a problem. Most importantly, building trust among stakeholders is one of the most effective ways to lead to meaningful action and results.
Ben Liadsky, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Andrew Taylor, Taylor Newberry Consulting
Changes to Ontario’s Lobbyists Registration Act that took effect on July 1, 2016 will affect our sector’s government relations practices. The panel unpacked the issues that have arisen as a result of the updated legislation and explored the ways we can ensure our sector remains a partner to government and a vital player in the public policy process.
ONN’s issues paper agrees with the intent behind this law but points out several problems, including: the amount of time it takes to track “lobbying” hours, public benefit organizations have to identify themselves as lobbyists when this could have an effect on donor/funder relations, and the lack of clarity in the definition of what is and what is not lobbying.
The panel compared the new provincial legislation to the twice-failed attempt to force nonprofits to register as lobbyists by the City of Toronto, and the federal regulations that govern political activities by charities. Using the City of Toronto lobbyist rules as a benchmark, the panel discussed the impact of lobbyist registration on civil society. The panel remarked on the importance of building broad coalitions where local groups can have direct conversations with city councillors.
Every nonprofit and charity should consider how it can contribute to better public policy. Most often this happens through public policy engagement with bureaucratic and political leaders. Nonprofits are key intermediaries between people and government, and they have a vital role to play in translating between policy and community and connecting citizens to government.
Allison Smith, Queen’s Park Today
John Campey, Ralph Thornton Centre
Terrance S. Carter, Carters
Jane Hilderman, Samara
2016 Nonprofit Driven Speakers
Connect the Sector
South East Ottawa Community Health Centre and Board Member, City for All Women Initiative
Director and CEO, Ottawa Art Gallery
Mentorship & Development Consultant, Youth Action Network
Retired CEO (Independent)
Executive Director, Pillar Nonprofit Network
Vice President, Communications and Public Affairs, United Way Toronto & York Region
Director, Citizenship Branch, Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration
Executive Director, 4Rs Youth Movement
Campaign Director, Environmental Defence
Executive Director, COSTI Immigrant Services
Executive Director, Ralph Thornton Centre
Trade-mark Agent - Managing Partner, Carters
Team Leader/Supervisor, DeafBlind Ontario Services
Senior Policy Advisor, Social Enterprise Branch, Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Growth
Coordinator, Research & Evaluation, Imagine Canada
Executive Director, Catholic Crosscultural Services
Spoken Word Poet, Writer, Actor and Comedian
Policy Advisor, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Community Prosperity, Mount Royal University
Executive Director, North York Women's Centre
Research Manager, J-PAL North America
Manager, Centre of Excellence for Evidence-Based Decision Making, Treasury Board Secretariat
Founder & Principal Consultant, ReStructure Consulting
Founder, Fail Forward
Board of Directors, St. Stephen’s Community House
Vice President of Programs and Operations, Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations
Executive Director, Samara Canada
Executive Director, Toronto Neighbourhood Centres
Documentary film-maker and retired lawyer
Director of Research and Advocacy, Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network
Executive Director, Furniture Bank
Executive Director, Coaches Association of Ontario
Finance Director, Nonprofits Assistance Fund
Executive Lead, Mowat NFP
President & CEO, Lawson Foundation
CEO/Founder, Ajah and Powered by Data
Evaluation Program Associate, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Advisor, Philanthropic Services, Hamilton Community Foundation
President & CEO, Imagine Canada
Assistant Deputy Minister, Supply Chain Ontario, Ontario Shared Services, Ministry of Government and Consumer Services
Partner, Miller Thomson
Executive Director & Founder, Water First
Director of Social Investment, Atkinson Foundation
Directeur Général, Conseil de la coopération de l’Ontario
Executive Director, Transition Initiative Kenora
Vice President, Max Bell Foundation
Master of Public Policy Candidate, University of Toronto
President, Philanthropic Foundations Canada
Executive Director, Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment
Director of Development and Outreach, Canadian HIV/AIDs Legal Network
Civic Tech Toronto
Founder and activist, Justicia for Migrant Workers
President, Meta Strategies
Senior Vice President, Community Impact, United Way Toronto and York Region
Civic Tech Toronto
Founder & Publisher, Queen's Park Today
Executive Director, Springboard
Program Manager, Community Living Toronto
Research Fellow, Toronto Arts Foundation, & Past Chair, ONN
Policy Advisor, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Founding Artistic Director, Thinking Rock Community Arts
Taylor Newberry Consulting
Executive Director, Ontario Nonprofit Network
Founding President and CEO, Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations
Executive Director, Employment and Education Centre