The results of a survey done by the Ontario Nonprofit Network (ONN) and Assemblée de la francophonie de l’Ontario (AFO) show that Ontario nonprofits have faced challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic with an ability to adapt, and a commitment to service continuation through the lockdowns and as the province rebuilds. The resilience of Ontario’s nonprofit sector during the year since the pandemic started is especially remarkable considering four trends also identified in that time period:
- Two-thirds of nonprofits experienced an increased demand for services, while one-half of nonprofits lost revenue for pandemic-related reasons.
- A minority of nonprofits received emergency support from either the federal or provincial government. Small organizations and those without paid staff were hit especially hard.
- Experiences vary by region.
- Nonprofits lost a massive amount of volunteers because of the pandemic.
Given these factors, it’s impressive that the the nonprofit sector not only continued to meet peoples’ needs during the pandemic, but also stayed cohesive enough that the ONN and AFO could, from the 3000 responses to their survey, generate 5 recommended actions that the Ontario Government take to ensure that they continue to operate as effectively as possible:
- Offer a new round of Small Business and Nonprofit Grants, improving communication so that all eligible businesses realize that they can apply.
- Apply an equity lens to recovery efforts to that volunteer-run nonprofits, nonprofits that serve marginalized groups, and other nonprofits that got low levels of emergency funding or that weren’t eligible for emergency funding during the pandemic receive some support during the recovery period.
- Support a sustainable and equitable recovery by investing in the low-carbon, women-majority care economy.
- Invest in the workforce development and digital infrastructure that supports nonprofit service delivery.
- Extend the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS).
You can find out more about the survey and the recommendations to the Ontario Government in the report that the ONN/AOF just released about their findings: https://theonn.ca/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/2021_ONN_State-of-the-Ontario-Nonprofit-Sector.pdf. Share with someone you know!
Thank you to Ontario’s nonprofit owners, administrators, and employees for taking such good care of us!