Evaluation Article: Eyes Wide Open: Learning as Strategy Under Conditions of Complexity and Uncertainty

Eyes Wide Open: Learning as Strategy Under Conditions of Complexity and Uncertainty.  An article that explores “three common ‘traps’ that hinder foundations’ capacity to learn and adapt.”


Invitation to Submit Community- Engaged Works to CES4Health

Summarized from CES4Health email:

Submit products of your community-engaged work for peer-reviewed publication and dissemination through CES4Health!

CES4Health publishes diverse products of community-based participatory research and other forms of community-engaged scholarship – including videos, policy briefs, resource guides and online toolkits.  Basically, any product in English from anywhere in the world, except journal manuscripts!

CES4Health has published 60 products to date — all products of community-engaged scholarship — and many co-authored by community and academic partners.

Community-based organizations are also finding CES4Health to be a valuable outlet for peer-reviewed publication of their community-engaged work, whether involving academic partnerships or not.

CES4Health provides wide dissemination of  high quality products that can improve the health of communities and “count” in the faculty promotion and tenure process.  Every product submitted is peer reviewed by community and academic experts.  If it’s published, the Editor sends an email about the publication and the rigorous peer review process to people that authors identify, such as deans, department chairs and supervisors.

CES4Health also tracks how many times a product is downloaded and can follow-up with users to find out how it was used – important data that can be included in promotion and tenure dossiers and grant proposals.  I should also mention that CES4Health does not retain copyright for any of the products it publishes.

Visit http://CES4Health.info to submit products, search for products and apply to be a reviewer.  Follow the latest CES4Health news on twitter at http://twitter.com/CES4Health

Thanks for your consideration!


Fay Fletcher, PhD

Associate Professor, Faculty of Extension, Academic Director, Community Engagement Studies, University of Alberta (www.extension.ualberta.ca/fletcher)

Associate Editor, CES4Health (http://CES4Health.info) Member, Scholar Development Workgroup, Canadian Community-Engaged Scholarship Partnership (http://cescholarship.ca)

Imagining Canada’s Future: SSHRC Six Challenge Areas

“For Canada to be a successful 21st‑century society we need to anticipate the challenges ahead and keep our minds open to the potential futures facing us all. This is the inspiration behind SSHRC’s Imagining Canada’s Future initiative.”

The six future challenge areas are:

  1. What new ways of learning, particularly in higher education, will Canadians need to thrive in an evolving society and labour market?
  2. What effects will the quest for energy and natural resources have on our society and our position on the world stage?
  3. How are the experiences and aspirations of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada essential to building a successful shared future?
  4. What might the implications of global peak population be for Canada?
  5. How can emerging technologies be leveraged to benefit Canadians?
  6. What knowledge will Canada need to thrive in an interconnected, evolving global landscape?

Source:  SSHRC

What implications does this direction have for the CFICE project?

Repost of the McConnell Foundation October Report:


Reviving Reciprocity: All My Relations Gathering 

The Circle of Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada is holding its 3rd annual gathering October 21-23 in Toronto. This gathering will allow those engaging in the Aboriginal philanthropic sector in Canada to connect with one another and gain access to new research, innovation and learning. Click here for details.

As a contribution to this work, the Foundation is pleased to present Leading Together: Indigenous Youth in Community Partnerships, produced in collaboration with Journalists for Human Rights and Tyee Solutions Society. This publication and accompanying videos will profile Indigenous and non-Indigenous partnerships across Canada focused on young people. Most have been prepared by experienced and emerging Indigenous journalists. Leading Together will be released at the All My Relations Gathering and will be available on our website in November 2013.

Announcing The Kathleen Laing Memorial Scholarships


We are pleased to announce the creation of The Kathleen Laing Memorial Scholarships to support students leaving the foster care system and entering post-secondary education. Annually, five students from across Canada will be awarded scholarships of $5,000 per year, renewable for up to four years.

The scholarship is named in honour of Mrs. Kathleen Laing, daughter of Mr. J.W. McConnell, who passed away last year, to reflect her lifelong concern for the less fortunate.

Mrs. Laing was personally involved with the Foundation for over thirty years, serving as its President in the 1960’s, and later as a Trustee.

The Kathleen Laing Memorial Scholarships have been established in partnership with the Children’s Aid Foundation, who will manage the program on the Foundation’s behalf. Interested students can apply online through the Children’s Aid Foundation in February 2014.

Ontario Government Supports Social Enterprise

The Ontario Government recently released Impact: A Social Enterprise Strategy for Ontario, a report that outlines Ontario’s thriving social enterprise sector and the government’s plans to support a new generation of social innovators.

A number of our grantees and partners were highlighted for their contribution to the social enterprise movement, including JUMP Math, Social Venture Connection (SVX) and The Centre for Social Innovation.

Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Economic Development, Trade and Employment stated “Our plan starts by making the growth of social enterprises easier by removing some of the barriers they face and making available social finance tools that connect them with investors who are interested in achieving a social return on investment, as well as a financial one”. Click here to read the report.

Food Business Boot Camp for entrepreneurs promoting healthy, local and sustainable food 

The Foundation is partnering with Food Secure Canada to offer Food Business Boot Camp, a program combining online and in-person training as well as one-on-one coaching and mentoring from food business experts. It is open to non-profits, charities, cooperatives and small businesses.

This program, which includes a series of eight webinars and a two-day workshop in Montreal on November 26-27, will cover topics including the business landscape, data-based modelling, business structure, financing, operations and growth. The workshop will provide opportunities to learn from experienced enterprises and exchange with other start-up enterprises from across Canada. Participants will also be eligible to apply to the Foundation for coaching grants. For more information, see Food Secure Canada’s website.

Community Foundations of Canada Releases Vital Signs Report

Community Foundations of Canada has released Vital Signs, an annual national report focused on issues in our communities and our country.

This year’s edition, Fertile Ground: Sowing the seeds of change in Canada’s food system, explores our relationship with food and asks how communities can mobilize locally to build a better food system for the future. “Community foundations across Canada support a myriad of programs and services related to food,” says CFC’s Ian Bird. “We wanted to use Vital Signs to step back, look at the bigger picture and share that view with communities and Canadians.”

Click here to read the report.

Visit the Foundation’s 75th Anniversary Timeline to learn more about our founder, our history, and our work today.

For all the latest news and information about the Foundation, please visit


A Pension Plan for Non-Profit Employees: A Quebec Example that is Working

Submitted by: Ted Jackson 

One of the remarkable outcomes of the work of the Service aux collectivites at the University of Quebec at Montreal  is Regime de Retraite, a pension plan for employees of community and women’s organizations in Quebec.  With some 3,000 members and a healthy investment fund, the plan provides the economic security of good pension benefits to support the retirement of workers in the non-profit and social sector. Interestingly, Michel Lizee, the animator of the initiative and now one of its board members, is a graduate of Carleton’s Institute for Political Economy.   He is willing to speak about this model with interested non-profits in English-speaking Canada.  For more information, see www.regimeretraite.ca.



Collective Impact

Author: Ted Jackson 

On September 24, Liz Weaver animated an all-day Community Collaboration Forum in London, Ontario.  Attended by 170 participants from the non-profit, university and government sectors, the event was organized by the Pillar Nonprofit Network.

The event included a panel entitled “Putting Collective Impact into Practice,” and involved Tom Cooper of the Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction, Cheryl Rose of Social Innovation Generation at the University of Waterloo, and Ted Jackson from CFICE.

The Tamarack Institute is one of North America’s leaders in the emerging field of collective impact.