Resources and Information for Nonprofit & Voluntary Organizations
As a Sector Council, our role is to support the Community Sector as a whole. Through this time of change, uncertainty, stress we recognize that most of the organizations in our sector are feeling the impact along with the communities that they serve. In an effort to ensure the continued success and health of our sector we are following the example of many large and small organizations across Canada and the world and have sourced some articles and resources available to help navigate the effects of the Global response to COVID-19.
Collectively, we chart the way!
Below we will post some of the most recent* news as it impacts our province & the Community Sector:
- Trudeau says new merged benefits will help worked affected by COVID - March 25, 2020
- Department of Finance introduces Canada Emergency Response Benefit to help workers and businesses - March 25, 2020
- Announcement Clarification from Sunday around State of Emergency - March 23, 2020
- Federal Economic and Policy Initiatives Related to COVID-19 - March 24, 2020
- Workers Compensation Comments - March 24, 2020
- Nova Scotia Declares State of Emergency - March 22, 2020
- Charities Directorate extends filing deadline to December 31, 2020 - March 20, 2020
*Note: We will endeavor to keep this section as up to date as possible but as our landscape is changing so quickly we recommend checking the Department of Health and Wellness and/or the Province of Nova Scotia pages (linked above) or your local news outlets to ensure you have the most accurate news and advise.
To get the most up to date information on the response to COVID-19 and how best to protect yourself and your community, please visit the following sites:
Advocacy & The Community Sector
One of our top priorities as a Sector Council is to advocate for organizations within our sector. In this section we will highlight the ways in which we have been actively advocating for support for Nonprofit & Voluntary organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic:
- COVID-19 Impact Survey - Closes April 2, 2020
- This survey is best completed by Executive Directors, CEOs, Board Chairs or Directors.
- Letter to Premier Stephen McNeil - Sent March 20, 2020
- COVID-19 Nonprofit Leadership Discussion Forum - Online forum via Basecamp
- If you are an ED, CEO, or Board Chair please fill out this sign-up form to join our online discussion forum. This forum is a confidential space for leaders in Nonprofit & Voluntary organizations to discuss the numerous issues and challenges they are facing in light of COVID-19 as well as to provide us with direction on how we can support you as a Sector Council.
Resources to Support Advocacy:
- The State of the Nonprofit Sector in Nova Scotia Report - by Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (APEC)
Activities by other organizations:
For those organizations in our sector with employees, below are some key pieces of information as well as resources to support your staff.
Information about Unemployment Benefits during COVID-19:
- If an employee(s) is laid off due to COVID-19 and business reduction/closure, they must apply to EI as per regular protocol. More info on that can be found here: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/ei-regular-benefit.html
- If an employee(s) is quarantined/self-isolated because they travelled, may have been in contact with someone infected, etc. they can apply for sickness benefits: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/ei-sickness.html. At this time, the requirement for a medical certificate has been relaxed for these individuals*
- Please note: for both of these situations, an individual must otherwise qualify for EI benefits. (ie, have enough hours, have contributed for the adequate amount of time, etc.)
Information regarding employers issuing ROEs:
- If the employee is no longer working due to a shortage of work because the business has closed or decreased operations due to coronavirus (COVID-19), use code A (Shortage of work). Do not add comments.
- If the employee is affected by the virus, the reason for the ROE should be D – Illness or Injury.
- If the employee refuses to come to work but is not sick or quarantined, use code E (Quit) or code N (Leave of absence), as appropriate. Avoid adding comments unless absolutely necessary.
- *Employees who are NOT affected by the virus but are put on leave due to the COVID-19 virus can contact the government at 1-833-381-2725 should they have any questions.
- NOTE: Add comments only when required. Doing so causes the ROE to be pulled from the automatic processing queue for review by an agent, slowing down the process.
Contact Service Canada directly with questions
More resources for Employers to help support your staff:
- FAQ: Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers - CRA
- How to find out if your business qualifies for the COVID-19 wage subsidy - Globe & Mail
- Layoffs, salary, EI and more: Your coronavirus and employment questions answered - Globe & Mail
- COVID-19 Fact Sheet for Employers & Community Groups - Nova Scotia Government
- COVID-19 - Worker's Compensation Board of Nova Scotia (WCB)
- Prime Minister Outline's Canada's COVID-19 Response - Office of the Prime Minister of Canada
- Do's and Don'ts for employers during COVID-19 pandemic - UNIFOR
- COVID-19 Member Impact Survey - Halifax Chamber of Commerce
- Showing up: Your Role as a Board Member During a Pandemic - Laura Zumdahl via LinkedIn
- COVID-19: AGMs During the Pandemic - Volunteer Canada
There are a number or legal requirements for organizations - as well as potential challenges in the future. Below are some resources to stay informed:
- COVID-19: Your rights at work - Public Service Alliance of Canada
- Coronavirus Employer Guide - Osler: Canadian Business Law
- COVID-19 Workplace Fact Sheets (Multiple Blog Posts) - Pink Larkin Lawyers
- COVID-19 in the Workplace - Rodney Employment Law
- COVID-19 Legal Resources - WeirFoulds LLP
Health & Well-Being Resources
The global response to COVID-19 has had some serious health implications across the board - for both mental and physical well-being. Below are some great resources to ensure that individuals and organizations are taking care during this stressful and uncertain time:
- Managing and Coping During COVID-19 - Centres for Disease Control (CDC)
- 6 tips to respond to employee anxiety about COVID-19 - Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA)
- COVID-19: Experts share insights on managing mental health - World Economic Forum
- What to do if you're anxious of worried about Coronavirus - Anxiety Canada
- How to be mindful of your mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic - CTV News Edmonton
- Coronavirus: how to protect your mental health - BBC News
- How to stay connected during self-isolation (COVID-19) - Drawing Change
Misinformation and prejudice has been a part of the global to the Coronavirus pandemic from the beginning. Below are some resources to help address racism and xenophobia as well as some examples of action taken to support communities affected by this discrimination:
- Human Rights Dimensions of COVID-19 Response - Human Rights Watch
- Reducing Stigma - Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
- UN Human Rights Chief: Racism and xenophobia are 'contagious killers' too - United Nations News
- COVID-19: Your voices against stigma and discrimination - Voices of Youth
- Statement against discrimination and xenophobia - Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants (OCASI)
- COVID-19: How to include marginalized and vulnerable people in risk communication and community engagement - RCCE
Extended self-isolation will be hard on all of us. Below are some links to virtual meet-ups happening all over Nova Scotia and Canada:
- Caremongering-Annapolis - Annapolis Valley Area facebook group for sharing & organizing community resources in response to COVID-19
- Caremongering Antigonish-Guysborough - Antigonish & Guysborough Area facebook group for sharing & organizing community resources in response to COVID-19
- Caremongering-HFX - Halifax Area facebook group for sharing & organizing community resources in response to COVID-19
- Caremongering Truro - Truro Area facebook group for sharing & organizing community resources in response to COVID-19
- Cumberland Cares - Community Support During the COVID Crisis - Cumberland County open facebook group
- COVID-19 Essential Services Map - Coming Soon from Valley Regional Enterprise Network
- The team at Colibri Software are generously building a free COVID-19 Essential Services Map using their Strollopia platform to help people find resources in their local community - Add your business to the map by completing this submission form.
*This section will be updated regularly as new meetups and connections are identified and formed. If you know of any not on this list please send them to us at email@example.com
Resources for Working Remotely
Many organizations have decided to support social distancing by sending their employees home to work remotely. As a virtual organization, CSCNS is very familiar with both the benefits and challenges of working with teams in a virtual / remote setting. Below are some resources we have compiled to support teams as you make this transition:
- Working Remotely: Orientation Guide - Tamarack Institute
- How to work with remote teams effectively - Keela
- 30+ Free tools for Nonprofits - Keela
- Basecamp - Online project management & communication tool (free 30-day trial available)
- Note: Basecamp is offering complimentary accounts for "first responders, public health officials, and groups along te PPE supply chain for first responders during the duration of your effort" - email firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.
- Supporting nonprofits & IGOS during COVID-19 - Microsoft via LinkedIn
- Note: Microsoft is offering Office 365 E1 for free up to 6 months for nonprofits. Read the article above to learn how you can take advantage of this offer.
Keep the Learning Going
If you've found yourself with extra time as your organization's operations have shifted, take advantage of the following free* online learning programs to build your capacity for when you can get back to regular operations:
- WEBINAR: How to Turn Your Refunds Into Donations (Apr 2 @ 3pm) - EventTechGroup
- WEBINAR: Suddenly Remote Starter Kit (Apr 3 @ 10am) - Zapier
- COVID-19 Resources & Webinars - Conference Board of Canada
- COVID-19 LIVE Q&A Sessions (Wed & Fri 12pm) - Rodney Employment Law
- COVID-19: What Canadian Directors Need to Know - Institute of Corporate Directors
- Governing an NFP through the COVID-19 crisis - Institute of Corporate Directors
- COVID-19: Dealing with Financial Distress - Institute of Corporate Directors
- Helping Businesses Respond During COVID-19: Business Response to COVID-19 with Grant Thornton - Cape Breton Partnership
General Capacity Building:
- Skills Online NS - Online learning for Nova Scotians
- Learning Centre - Tamarack Institute
- Virtual Programs - JA Nova Scotia
- Online Resources - Halifax Public Libraries
- Nonprofit Organizations Courses - Class Central
- Free Nonprofit Training - NonprofitReady.org
- Business Courses online catalogue - Coursera*
- Keela Academy - Resources and training for online data management
- HubSpot Academy - Resources and training for online marketing and more!
- 7 free online courses to make you smarter at business - Canadian Business
- 11 websites for nonprofit learning - Classy
*While we did try to identify only free options in this list some of the above programs do have a fee attached. Those programs have been marked with an asterisk (*).
Below are some links to other great resources:
- Resource pages for Nonprofit & Voluntary Organizations
- Imagine Canada - COVID-19 and the Canadian nonprofit Sector
- The Ontario Nonprofit Network - Nonprofits On The Front Lines
- Conference Board of Canada - COVID-19 Resources
- Volunteer Canada - COVID-19 Update
- Charity Village - COVID-19 Resources from Canadian Nonprofit Umbrella Groups
- David Oyler Consulting - Offering free practical guidance on Canada Revenue Agency policy for Registered Charities
- Contact David to learn more: email@example.com
- The Philanthropist - Subscribe to their newsletter for updates on COVID & the nonprofit sector
- Government Resources
- Business Resources
- Small Business BC - Resources for Small Businesses Affected by Coronavirus
- Halifax Chamber of Commerce - COVID-19 Information & Resource Page
- Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (APEC) - COVID-19 In Atlantic Canada
- Resources for Individuals