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The Journey Continues: The Second Report to Canadians on Implementing An Accord Between the Government of Canada and the Voluntary Sector

Background Paper: Government of Canada Implementation

B. Progress on Priorities

As set out in the Accord, the Government of Canada and the voluntary sector are accountable for reporting on their progress in implementing the Accord and the Codes of Good Practice on Funding and Policy Dialogue. Following is an overview of government activities and accomplishments during the current report period – October 2003 to September 2004 – in the areas identified as priorities in the Government of Canada background paper to the first report to Canadians, Taking the Accord Forward.

About the Government-wide survey

Much of the information contained in this background paper is based on a survey of federal departments and agencies conducted during the summer of 2004. Building on lessons learned from last year’s process, the questionnaire framework was designed to better accommodate the diverse relationships that exist between the voluntary sector and government departments, and to enhance comparability between the two sectors’ responses. More streamlined than the 2003 version, the 2004 questionnaire solicited input on:

  • overall awareness in each institution of the Accord and Codes of Good Practice on Funding and Policy Dialogue
  • actions taken or planned to implement the Accord and Codes
  • good practices that have been implemented related to funding
  • good practices that have been implemented related to policy dialogue
  • progress on priorities identified in the institution’s last progress report

The 2004 questionnaire was sent to deputy heads across the federal government in August. In addition to highlighting major findings from the survey, this background paper showcases some of the creative and effective ways individual departments and agencies are making the Accord and Codes of Good Practice part of the way“they do business” with the voluntary sector.



A total of 39 departments and agencies submitted a completed survey questionnaire*:

  • Agriculture and Agri-food Canada
  • Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
  • Canada Economic Development Agency of Canada for Québec Regions
  • Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation
  • Canada Revenue Agency
  • Canada School of Public Service
  • Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety
  • Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency
  • Canadian Food Inspection Agency
  • Canadian Heritage
  • Canadian Human Rights Commission
  • Canadian Institutes of Health Research
  • Canadian International Development Agency
  • Canadian Transportation Agency
  • Citizenship and Immigration Canada
  • Correctional Services Canada
  • Environment Canada
  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada
  • Health Canada
  • Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
  • Indian Residential Schools Resolution Canada
  • Industry Canada
  • Infrastructure Canada
  • Justice Canada
  • Law Commission of Canada
  • National Battlefields Commission
  • National Defence and Canadian Armed Forces
  • National Parole Board
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Council
  • Parks Canada Agency
  • Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness
  • Public Service Commission of Canada
  • Public Works and Government Services
  • Royal Canadian Mounted Police
  • Social Development Canada
  • Statistics Canada
  • Transport Canada
  • Veterans Affairs Canada
  • Western2 Economic Diversification


  * An additional eight departments/agencies indicated that the
questionnaire wias not applicable due to their organization’s
limited involvement with the voluntary sector.


  • Developing a voluntary sector lens or approach to ensure that the implications of legislation, regulations, policies and programs on voluntary sector organizations are considered

Although the federal government did not institute any broad-based initiatives to develop a government-wide voluntary sector lens during the current report period, individual departments and agencies undertook a number of related activities. Practices such as these can serve as useful models for other departments and agencies as they work towards integrating the Accord and Codes of Good Practice on Funding and Policy Dialogue into their daily work.

  • Integrating the Accord into existing reporting mechanisms;

As the government-wide survey points out, departments and agencies are moving forward on initiatives that support ongoing monitoring and reporting systems. For example:

  • half of responding departments and agencies are seeking voluntary sector input on the relationship
  • about four out of ten have benchmarked their relationship with the voluntary sector
  • more than half have a process for reporting on progress – some more informally than others
  • Promoting career exchanges between the voluntary sector and Government to increase understanding and knowledge about each other

Although data on the number and nature of career exchanges are not available, anecdotal information suggests that a variety of ad hoc exchanges took place between the two sectors during the current reporting period. For example, an SDC employee worked with the Voluntary Sector Forum on the issue of liability insurance (see page 8 of this report).


The department uses a “Code lens” to modify the terms and conditions of their programs and for the overall management and administration of its programs.


A voluntary sector lens has been developed for reviewing Cabinet documents.


The department’s progressive performance management regime is being considered as a tool for monitoring progress on the Accord’s principles.


Branches and regional offices have included Accord and Code implementation in their work planning processes.


The Departmental Performance Report and the Report on Plans and Priorities describe plans for and progress in implementing the Accord and Codes as a horizontal initiative across the Government of Canada.


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Last Updated: 2019-08-19