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Legacy


Archives February 2013


The next chapter in a great story

February 12, 2013

A message from Ian Bird, President and CEO of the Community Foundations of Canada.

We all know what fuels our sector – it’s more than donors, it’s more than government – it’s the people that matter. Our labour force is the heart and soul of the nonprofit sector and the HR Council has given voice to that reality since its inception in 2005.

They’ve raised awareness about our labour force clout (as large as the construction, mining, and oil and gas industries combined), they’ve been our de facto HR departments, and they’ve helped us think about what it means to be an ‘employer of choice’ in Canada.

Now, the HR Council is about to start a new chapter and many of you may be wondering what’s next – and who is Community Foundations of Canada anyway? You want to make sure the place you’ve relied on for so much information over the years is going to be in good hands. Let me tell you a bit about us and our relationship with the HR Council that will set your mind at ease.

We’ve been fans of the HR Council since the very beginning – in fact, we helped get it started more than a decade ago. Community Foundations of Canada, United Way of Canada and what was then The Coalition of National Voluntary Organizations gathered to identify the HR issues that we felt were unique to our sector.

Canada’s impending labour force crunch was just becoming a hot media topic and we knew our sector was vulnerable. But we also knew we had plenty of special strengths – you don’t attract eight per cent of the labour force without doing something right!

The HR Council forced us to look up from our work and see a reality that was equally important – that the people who respond to local needs and run our programs and organizations are vitally important to the health of our communities and our country. In short, the people matter!

At Community Foundations of Canada we are focused on the best ways to build smart and caring communities – and we now know that people are at the heart of that effort. So when the HR Council started thinking about its next steps, we jumped at the opportunity to protect a resource that is relied upon by so many organizations across Canada.

Plenty of others wanted to contribute as well, so we worked together to start a new chapter in the conversation around the sector’s labour force issues and opportunities.

I want you to know that our first priority is protecting the amazing assets built by the HR Council over the years, especially its web portal. We will make sure these tools and resources remain free and accessible to sector organizations.

Then we’re going to take a page from the HR Council’s early beginnings and host conversations to co-create a vision for its work going forward. A volunteer advisory group is going to guide us and connect us to the leaders who can imagine the type of shared leadership model we need to adopt going forward.

This isn’t the end of the story – just the beginning of a new chapter. Stay tuned for more in the months ahead!