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New Charity/Government Working Groups in Canada

(Aug. 7, 2006) Two new working groups, composed of members of the government and the charitable sector, have been formed to strengthen nonprofit programs both at the national level in Canada and in Alberta.

Following on the work done at the federal level by the Voluntary Sector Initiative, the Alberta Nonprofit/Voluntary Sector Initiative will encourage collaboration between the sector and the provincial government to ensure sustainability of the sector and help address current and future challenges including funding, human resources, insurance, and screening.

The initiative will be led by a Leaders Council, who will begin by developing a framework to guide and strengthen the relationship between the provincial government and the charitable sector.

The council will be made up of representatives from the nonprofit sector, as well as key government ministries, including Community Development, Justice and Attorney General, Seniors and Community Supports, Children's Services, and Government Services. The framework is expected to be submitted to the Minister of Community Development in January 2007.

"This sector, with over 19,000 organizations employing 176,000 people in Alberta, has incredible impact on our communities," said Martha Parker, co-chair of the Leaders Council, in a press release about the initiative.  "Through this initiative, the sector and the Alberta government will proactively work to build a long term collaborative relationship to strengthen the sector and improve the lives of all Albertans."

More information on the Alberta Nonprofit/Voluntary Sector Initiative can be found here.

Service Canada Advisory Committee

Another working group recently announced, this time on the federal level, is the Service Canada Voluntary Sector Advisory Committee. Its mission will be to help the federal government ensure that its programs and services enhance employment outcomes for individuals and communities. In addition, the committee will assist the government in restoring accountability and ensuring effective and efficient program delivery.

According to the Honourable Diane Finley, minister of human resources and social development, the new committee will help strengthen the positive relationship between Service Canada and its community-based service delivery partners. “The Advisory Committee will also ensure that government-decision making respects the unique role that the voluntary sector and community-based organizations play in contributing to Canada’s employment and labour market,” said Finely in a press release about the committee.

A joint Service Canada/Voluntary Sector Working Group was established in July 2005 to examine ways to streamline administrative practices and identify improvements to help guide the future administration and management of grants and contributions programming.

Service Canada’s programs and services provide support to partners across the country, including voluntary sector organizations, municipalities, band councils and private sector organizations.

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