IM/IT Advisory Group Meeting Minutes
June 6, 2003
Don McCreesh thanked everyone for attending the meeting and asked participants
to introduce themselves.
|Don McCreesh (Co-Chair/coprésident)
Ross MacLeod (Co-Chair/coprésident)
Liz Hong-Farrell (replacing T. Gorber)
Elinor Bradley, Director / Directrice
|Celestica Inc. / YMCA
Family Services Canada
Niagara Centre Community Leadership
Manitoba Voluntary Sector
Centre for Voluntary Research Development
Voluntary Sector Forum
Focus IT Solutions Inc.
Health & Community Services
Item 1 - Program Update
Bernard Chabot provided a debrief on the Secretariat’s activities
since the last Advisory group meeting in January and explained that
a transparent process (RFP) requires several steps, research and consultation
to finalize items. Two research papers were also produced during this
period and will be part of the discussions for this meeting.
The RFP for ‘Changing Funding Practices’ was posted on
the VSI Web site in March. There were over 900 hits and 2 proposals
were submitted. A working group of the IM/IT Advisory group evaluated
the proposals and made its recommendation to Industry Canada. The bid
was won by IMPACS, the same organization that did the environmental
scan. The Secretariat will be informing the Advisory group shortly with
the details of IMPACS’ statement of work.
The Secretariat plans to make use of the VSI Extranet. It
will be used by IMPACS for the Changing Funding Practices contract and
a section will also be created for members of the Advisory Group. The
Forum needs to make a few modifications prior to using the Extranet.
The Secretariat will inform the Advisory group when it is available.
IMPACS will be responsible for contacts outside the federal
government. The Secretariat will pursue discussions with the Forum to
address Changing Funding Practices within government.
Following a first meeting of the ADM-Champions, Industry
Canada has started work on the Accord and the Codes of Good Practices.
The first step is to raise the level of awareness within the department.
A plan is being prepared to address this issue.
PCH informed the group that tools are being developed for
the implementation of the Accord. PCH is preparing a video, a workbook
and a checklist (i.e. how departments are engaging their staff, what
tools are you using, how are you making it known, etc.).
Following a request by the group for a list of key government
contacts that will be taking on champion roles on the Accord and the
Codes of Good Practices, PCH mentioned that a list of champions will
soon be available and it will be posted on the VSI website. The group
also expressed the need to have Accord champions in federal government
offices in the regions.
Some of the members expressed their concerns over funding
issues, more specifically on government funding. Because Canada is facing
many challenges, such as SARS, MadCow desease..., funding are being
re-directed from programs to address the new challenges. This situation
is creating a very delicate financial situation in many voluntary organizations.
Industry Canada mentioned that the federal government has a working
group to which the co-Chair of the IM/IT Advisory Group could raise
the VS concerns on this issue. The co-Chair will report back on this
issue. It was also agreed that the voluntary sector should provide further
updates on this situation.
Item 2 - Training and Technical Support Network
The Secretariat received a total of 31 proposals from organizations
that are already providing training and technical support services to
the voluntary sector. The June 7th meeting will mainly test the vision
expressed by the IM/IT Secretariat and those from the organizations
and will provide an opportunity for organizations to discuss how they
can work together to form a Canada-wide training and technical support
Organizations that were not chosen were open to providing
their coordinates to the other organizations in the event they would
like to partner with them.
Don McCreesh mentioned that for members attending the June
7th meeting, their roles and responsibilities are to provide guidance
and advice to organizations in order to help them understand the vision.
The sub-group for the network will likely continue to be involved with
Item 3 - Funding Exchange Strategy - Presentation by Terry Kuny
Terry gave his presentation based on a 2 step strategy:
1 - an RFO to get buy-in from key stakeholders
2 - implementation if there is consensus
Members had not realized that federal departments would not
be included in the Funding Exchange.
David Reid mentioned that Canadian Heritage was previously
the lead on a project similar to the Funding Exchange but for the federal
government. The business case for this project showed that it was too
overwhelming. That project finished 18 months ago and will not be resurrected.
This is to say the Funding Exchange should be attempting to cover the
federal government side.
Following Terry’s presentation, the group stated a need
to revisit this deliverable because the government is a very important
piece of this project. The group suggested a different strategy to address
this issue. The strategy would be to post an RFO to identify who presently
has a database of funders that could be enhanced and adapted with a
reasonable access cost and do two pilot projects to establish local
funding exchange distribution projects at the local/regional level,
especially in cities that have started the process.
The Group recognized that a Funding Exchange would be a long
process and could not be done within the actual time remaining under
IM/IT. Enhancing existing databases and doing pilots could serve as
beginning steps toward a goal to establish a Funding Exchange at a later
date if the opportunity arises.
The Advisory group came to a consensus on the new strategy.
Item 4 - VS Government On-line (GOL) Portal
Presentation by Suzanne Clément
There have been discussions at the senior leadership of the GOL about
whether there is a role for the Canada site in relation to the voluntary
sector. There is an interest in developing proposals for the creation
of a voluntary sector presence on the Canada site or an access point
to specific federal government information. PCH has agreed to lead this
file if there is an interest from the Sector. PCH will prepare a proposal
to develop a Business Case and determine the interest of the Sector
in this type of project, i.e. what type of content or cluster-like approach
would be required, how this could help the Sector when designing its
own Portal, etc.
The Group stated how everyone needs to understand the GOL
initiative and that there has not yet been any formal engagement from
the Government in order to get the VS on line with GOL.
The IM/IT Advisory Group agreed to be the contact point for
this project. The Forum will seek more representatives from the VS to
expand the group as necessary. The IM/IT Secretariat will provide support
to this initiative
PCH will package a proposal within the next two weeks or
so. The Advisory group will receive a copy of the proposal via e-mail
or extranet. PCH may have to send the proposal prior to sending it to
members because of the short window of opportunity to submit this proposal.
If the proposal for a Business Case is accepted, the new
committee will likely meet in September. PCH will be looking to the
Sector for advice on developing the plan and a budget. A go, no-go decision
would be taken after completion of the Business Case.
Item 5 - The Portal - Long term governance issue
The Secretariat brought two issues to the Group: a) the question of
who retains the Intellectual Property of the Portal, domain names, etc.,
and b) how we should deal with the Governance issue.
The following options were proposed for IP:
1 - IP stays with the government
2 - Secure flexibility and ownership now with a given national association
and transfer it to whatever consortium is created, if any, to represent
the Sector in the future
3 - Leave ownership and IP to contractor while having guidelines in
agreements on governance.
The Group chose Option #3. This will permit the contractor
to continue to improve the Portal once it is developed.
Option #1 was rejected because the government would
not be able to return the ownership to the sector as it would be an
asset of the Crown.
Option #2 was also rejected because the Contractor
would not have a vested interest and not contribute as much to the Portal
knowing that is could be moved at any time depending on decisions out
of their control.
Industry Canada will verify with its lawyers about the proper terminology
to use to ensure that the Group and the JSC could be involved in making
suggestions to the contractor during and after the contribution agreement
The sub-group on the Portal will revise the RFP and will make its recommendations
to IC for the best candidate that has submitted a proposal to build
the Portal. The Advisory Group plans to provide their input on the Portal
on an on-going basis.
Item 6 - Susan Phillips - presentation
Dr. Susan Phillips, a Professor at Carleton University, has done many
research papers on the Voluntary Sector. Industry Canada commissioned
this research paper “The Voluntary Sector: A productive Force
in the New Economy” to get a better understanding of the
VS needs after IM/IT, the role of the VS in the new knowledge-based
economy and what possible role Industry Canada may be playing, if any,
after this phase of the VSI is completed.
- Dr. Phillips’ presentation is attached. The recommendations
- Supporting Research and Development
- Fostering Innovation
- Fostering Technological Innovation
- Investing in Skills, Education and Employment
- Enhancing Network Capital
- Encouraging Social Entrepreneurship
- Promoting Good Governance and Self-Regulation
- Supporting Community Development
- Building a Stronger Relationship with the Voluntary Sector
Information that will be coming out of ‘The Satellite Account’
working group, which should be released in January 2004, will likely
provide supplementary information on this subject and give us a much
better picture. It could provide us with good supporting tools to move
Item 7 - Martin Itzkow - presentation
Mr. Martin Itzkow is Director, Manitoba Voluntary Sector Initiative.
Industry Canada commissioned this research paper “Voluntary
and Non-Profit Sector – Information Communication Technology –
Strategic Opportunities and Partnerships – Lessons learned and
future opportunities within an environment focussing on innovation”
to get a better understanding of the VS needs after IM/IT. The paper
deals with where the VS is going and what will need to be done by IM/IT
if there is a second phase to the VSI.
The following recommendations were made:
- That a new class of ICT technology be developed to provide an innovation
ICT platform for communities;
- That a community based program initiative be created to find, animate
and organize known and buried assets toward innovative e-communities.
There was lots of discussion about Open Source software versus other
software such as Microsoft. The Group agreed that the IM/IT Secretariat
should be encouraging the use of Open Source when possible. The IM/IT
Secretariat and PCH are members of an advisory committee led by Industry
Canada=s ICT Branch studying Open Source. The Secretariat will keep
the Group informed of development on this issue.
Item 8 - Open discussions on future orientations
Ross MacLeod, DG of Information Highway Applications Branch (IHAB)
and co-Chair of the IM/IT Advisory Group debriefed members on IHAB plans
for the future. The funding for most of the IHAB programs runs out next
year and IHAB is looking at how it could best serve its clients, and
what innovative approaches can be looked at to fulfill its mission within
the IC mandate. The funding for IM/IT will run out in March
2005. Industry Canada would like to begin discussions on the future
role of IHAB for the Voluntary Sector.
Members expressed the following comments:
- need discussions at the local level;
- need awareness of what is already out there;
- need more awareness of SchoolNet and CAP initiatives;
- as IC develops rules and regulations, invite the private and voluntary
sectors to be part of the discussions;
- corporate social responsibility; need some counterparts;
- regional lead ministers need to understand that the Sector plays an
- need for centers of voluntary sector and academia to meet together;
- need for more outreach to reflect Canada=s diversity;
- the Centers of Excellence should be the focal point;
- need a whole range of tools around technology such as database management,
templates for creating new web sites, on-line meetings, sharing information,
providing learning, evaluation tools, etc;
- need to find a solution for an evaluation of software;
- need a place to find best practices, etc…
- there was an interest from the group in discussing future directions.
(It was agreed that this will be discussed at future meetings).
A motion presented by Don McCreesh and seconded by Maggie Fietz to
Brenda Cameron-Couch (Forum) and David Reid (PCH-GOL) as full members
of the IM/IT Advisory group was accepted in unanimity.
“Creating a Canada-Wide Training & Support Network for the
Delta Hotel, Ottawa, Ontario
June 7, 2003
Don McCreesh, Co-Chair for the IM/IT Advisory Group opened the meeting
and welcomed participants. See Annex A for list of participants.
Bernard Chabot, Manager of the IM/IT Secretariat reminded participants
that the purpose of this meeting was to offer an opportunity for organizations
already providing training and technical support in the voluntary sector
to express their views on how they see the setting up of a network.
Participants were asked to introduce themselves and provide a brief
description of their organization and services offered.
To initiate the discussion Jo Sutton, member of the IM/IT Advisory
Group provided an overview of a vision for the training and technical
support network. See Annex B.
A general discussion was held and participants provided their views
and comments as to how they see the development of a training and technical
support network for the voluntary sector.
Participants generally supported the idea of a regional model. The
regional networks could then be linked together to form a Canada-wide
Participants were invited to gather in groups to begin discussions
on possible partnerships. The participants gathered by regional representations,
such as the west, prairies, Ontario, Quebec and the Atlantic.
B. Chabot encouraged participants to continue discussions among themselves.
He reiterated that, as organizations are already sustainable and are
already providing training and/or technical support and that Industry
Canada is seeking to help these organizations enhance their services
and increase their visibility in the sector.
In July, a Request for Funding Opportunities (RFO) will be forwarded
to organizations, which were retained through the Letter of Intent process.
Organizations are encouraged to form consortia are encouraged to offer
services to a region.
Annex / annexe A
LIST OF PARTICIPANTS - June 7, 2003 MEETING
Representatives from sector organizations / représentants
des organismes du secteur :
Leslie Adams, Peter Royce, Pacific Community Networks Association
(PCNA), BC/Yukon, (previously BC Community
Renee Bernier, Jane Lister, Community Futures Dev. Corporation
of Boundary Area (CFDC), BC
Steven Soucy, Daryl Beatty, Community Information and Referral
Society (CIRS), AB
John Corriveau, Mario Mihoc, NetLAN Consulting Inc.,
Edwin Arinze, Adebayo Bakare, Afro-Caribbean Cultural Association
of Saskatchewan Inc. (ACCAS Inc.), AB
Connie Crockett, Journeys Education Association Inc.,
Linda Bliss, reBOOT Canada , ON
Larry Rooney, Phoenix Community Works Foundation (PCWF),
Peter Frampton, Dieter Soegtrop, The Learning Enrichment Foundation
Arti Freeman, Brenda Herchmer, Niagara Centre for Community
Bill Marvel, Tetyana Slautina, CompuCorps Mentoring/Les mentors
de CompuCorps, ON and BC
Ken Northmore, Craigwood Youth Services, ON
Sylvio Boudreau, Ken Boudreau, Fondation ConceptArt multimédia,
Geoff MacDougall, ITAC, ON
Monique Chartrand, Martin Charles, Communautique, QC
Mohamed Soulami, François Faucher, Actions Interculturelles
de développement et de l'éducation (AIDE), QC
Linda Stilborne, Peter MacGibborn, The Quebec Learners' Network,
David Boyce, Southeast Environmental Association Limited
Penelope Row, Pamela Corrigan, Community Services Council (CSC),
NFLD and Labrador
June Hooper, Easter Seals March of Dimes / Timbres de pâques
- Marche des dix sous, Jim Asher, Data Shepard,
Members of the IM/IT Advisory Group / Membres du Groupe consultatif
Don McCreesh (Co-Chair/coprésident), Ross MacLeod (Co-Chair/coprésident),
Martin Itzkow, Francine Pelletier, Jo Sutton, Bernard Chabot, Rodney
Other participants / autres participants :
Elinor Bradley, Director/directrice, Innovation and Inclusion / Innovation
et inclusion, Industry Canada / Industrie Canada
IM/IT Program staff / équipe du programme sur la GI-TI
: Gisèle Proulx, Michèle Leury, Lyne Martin,
Louise Lalonde, Annie Joannette
Speaking notes for meeting June 7th.
Speaking notes - IM/IT Advisory Group’s Vision of the
Training & Technical Support Network for the Voluntary Sector
The vision is to make IM/IT training and support services available
to voluntary organisations all across Canada which enable VSOs to further
their work using IM/IT and to encourage the flourishing of IM/IT initiated
growth and effectiveness of the voluntary sector.
- The training and technical support network for the voluntary sector
will be created as an extension of existing IM/IT training and support
available to the voluntary sector.
- The services will be provided by coalitions of organisations, largely
founded in the groups who are present on June 7th. We will encourage
the growth of consortia of organisations.
- The serving organisations must have demonstrated that they are
able to offer IM/IT training and technical support to the voluntary
- The IM/IT Advisory group has long argued that, wherever possible,
the network and training for the voluntary sector should come from
the voluntary sector
- The models are expected to be self sustaining
- Services will be regional. We intend that there be coverage from
coast to coast to coast, but may not be able to achieve this immediately.
- There may be organisation/consortium/consortia which will be able
to negotiate equipment and software at advantageous prices for voluntary
sector organisations. The store will advertise the rates and prices
it has negotiated.
- A central access point to facilitate voluntary organisations’
access to IM/IT (support through 1-800 number, web based information
with interactivity and email, and a growing list of online FAQs which
comes out of the experience of the use of the 1-800 number)
- Outreach by the consortium to encourage VSOs to take part, including
ensuring participation by francophone organisations.
- Outreach by the consortium to ensure that the networks reflect
the diversity of Canada. This includes the North, rural, remote, people
with disabilities, women, immigrant, and visible minority.
- Outreach by the consortium to ensure that VSOs understand the value
of IM/IT in their work
- On-site services if possible (eg distance will limit some) for
training and support
- The network will enable multi way online conversations between
those taking up the services offered. These will largely be for information
sharing and be according to the needs of participants. The conversations
may offer such things as mutual technical support, notification of
meetings and events, or sharing knowledge of resources.
- The network will provide regular communications about activities,
resources available, other relevant information and offer expert advice.
- There will be IM/IT workshops
- Online IM/IT planning curriculum for organisations - the process
for ensuring successful take up of IM/IT by the individuals within
an organisation and planning for the most effective placing of the
- Online IM/IT learning to learn to use the technology
- Online IM/IT learning to apply the technology to their work
- Self sustaining should include the aim that the voluntary sector
organisations eventually have the capacity to use IM/IT effectively
for their mission and, as far as possible, independently of ongoing
Expectations of the VSOs to be served
- Will look for their geographically nearest Network when wanting
- Will contact the vendor or manufacturer when in need of hardware
or software support
- Will be able to contact a network call centre for referrals to
places where they can find an answer to their technical and application
- Should expect on-site training and support where possible
- Will be able to buy hardware and software at advantageous prices
(both charities and non-profits)
- Will be able to extend their knowledge and experience from other
VSOs in online forums (listserv/chat/web board/blog) supplied by the
- Should be willing to share their experience and information online
with other VSOs (lessons learned, sometimes as an evergreen document).
- Should consider and share their creative and fun ways of using
IM/IT for their work.
- Should be encouraged to see themselves as part of a network
- Should continue to be self sustaining in their use and implementation
of IM/ITs in the long run