CCIC monthly e-bulletin:November-December 2014                    About CCIC     |     Contact Us
banner image


Looking back on 2014 and forward to 2015!

Julia Sanchez Dear members and friends of CCIC,

I love the last days of the year because I find there is always so much to look proudly or fondly back on, no matter how many challenges a particular year might have presented. And 2014 is no exception – so much silver lining this year to highlight!

DIALOGUE has been central to much of what we have been involved in at CCIC over the last 12 months. Dialogue with allies about new collaborations, dialogue with government about a complete makeover of the relationship between CSOs and DFATD, and most importantly dialogue with our members to define and redefine the way we work together and we move forward as a sector.

On collaboration with our allies, we have continued to strengthen and grow partnerships and collaborations with a host of key organizations, including CAIDP with whom we co-hosted a very successful annual conference in May, and others like NSI, CASID, the McLeod Group, Climate Action Network Canada, University of Ottawa and many more.

With the government, and DFATD more specifically, it is fair to say that the climate has changed dramatically during 2014. We have basically seen a shift from a tightly closed-door policy which allowed for dialogue only on very specific government priorities and with a very short-list of groups, to an open-door policy which is responsive to the issues on which civil society as a whole wants to engage. A highlight of that was the formal consultation on the draft Civil Society Partnership Policy, which included several ministerial round tables and numerous discussions with DFATD staff, and provided an opportunity for CCIC to consult its broad membership as well. We look forward with anticipation to the final outcome of that process, which will mark an important milestone in the shift we are observing.

More generally, government has been 100% more engaged and responsive to our sector over the last year that it was in the previous five. In 2015 we need to see more concrete action– including translation of the principles and commitments that will be contained in the policy transformed into real progress on the ground. On funding opportunities for civil society, we want to see the government show much more responsiveness to the priorities of a more diverse set of groups and programs. We want to also see the will to dialogue with our sector become more institutionalized and consequential.

With our membership, in addition to the regular work done through the many coalitions and working groups that we lead and support, we have worked closely on strategic files such as the narrative project, whose tool kit will be launched in February, on building a campaign for the post-2015 framework and the federal elections, to be launched in January. More on that below.

And we have made great headway on a number of key issues such as the need for diverse funding mechanism for the sector, recommendations for the Canadian government to re-focus its work on extractives and development, and the need to enhance its approach to public engagement. The ad-hoc working groups that were struck in the summer have mobilized more than 40 representatives from our membership to work together on draft recommendations for DFATD on how to shift from the current emphasis on calls for proposals, promotion of the Canadian extractive sector as a key solution to development, and narrowly defined public engagement activities, as well as towards reaching a better balance in the delivery of humanitarian assistance for Canada.  Two of these ad-hoc groups ended the year sharing draft recommendations with DFATD staff and getting great feed-back. In the new year, we will be consulting with the broader CCIC membership and finalizing the work to be used to further dialogue with government on these fundamental issues.

2015 is a hugely important year for the international development community in Canada – both because of the opportunities and challenges that the new set of international development goals, to be adopted in September 2015, will provide as well as because we will be in an electoral year where we need to make sure that foreign policy and international development priorities are part of the discussion. And if that was not enough, we also have the Beijing+20 discussions and the Climate Conference in Paris for which we need to position Canada to do better and do more.

CCIC will be calling out to its members and allies to join forces this coming year to work on a “We Can Do Better” campaign to demand from our leaders, our government and our supporters that we step up our game on the international arena in a year of momentous events. We will call for more and better action on the rights and women’s rights front, to combat inequality, and on climate and the environment. Stay tuned for our campaign launch in January, our Leader’s Forum during International Development Week (February 4 and 5) where leaders will be meeting parliamentarians to present the campaign asks, and our annual conference (May 12-14) which will be entitled “Universal Goals, Canadian Challenges”!

We have a lot to build on from this year’s achievements, so let’s make sure we get our batteries recharged over the next couple of weeks so that we can turn 2015 into a course-shifting year for Canada’s role in the world.

It is a pleasure for all of us at CCIC to be working with such a committed, vibrant and creative community – thank you all and happy holidays!

In solidarity,


Do you have any reactions to this column? I’d like to hear from you! Please send any comments to Julia Sanchez.



Happy Holidays to our readers and supporters!

On behalf of CCIC’s team, please receive our best wishes for the Holiday Season and the year to come! 2015 will be an important year both at the national and global levels, and we will continue to work together for a more inclusive, equal and peaceful world. Please note that our office will be closed between Christmas and January 1st.

dividing line

Save the date! CCIC Leaders Forum February 4-5 2015, Ottawa

CCIC is thrilled to be hosting a special Leaders’ Forum in February 2015. This two-day event is designed to bring together heads of agency (EDs, CEOs, Presidents, etc.) as well as their Board chairs (or other board members) to discuss and agree on common strategies to address current opportunities. The 2015 Leaders’ Forum will feature a Ministerial address, a keynote speaker from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the launching of CCIC's Narrative Toolkit, and a ‘Day on the Hill’ event for meetings with key MPs and Caucus members of the main parties.  The CCIC Post-2015 Campaign, the Post-2015 Framework and the 2015 Federal Elections will serve as the backdrop for this important event.

dividing line

Substantial Call for proposals on MNCH

Substantial Call for proposals on MNCHOn November 5, Minister of International Development Christian Paradis announced an allocation of $ 370 million to the Partnerships for Strengthening Maternal, Newborn and Child Health call for proposals. The call is open to Canadian NGOs, civil society groups and private sector organizations with experience in international development, and MNCH more specifically, with two streams: one for projects between 1 and 19 million dollars, and another for projects of 20 million or more. These two streams as well as other characteristics of the call make it more accessible to organizations of different sizes. Read more about CCIC’s reaction to the call by consulting our press release. Two weeks after the call was launched, DFATD organized webinars to provide more information on how to submit a proposal and to answer questions.

dividing line

GPEDC members meet in the Republic of Korea

GPEDCAt the First High-Level Meeting (HLM) of the Global Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation (GPEDC) last April in Mexico, the GPEDC Progress Report indicated that the pace of implementing commitments since Busan has been undeniably slow, while some countries have even regressed. In November, members for the GPEDC met in the Republic of Korea to participate in an annual stock-taking workshop on implementation. The workshop built on a number of country case studies presented by different stakeholders, demonstrating how multi-stakeholder partnerships and the Busan commitments are working on the ground. The CSO Partnership for Development Effectiveness (CPDE) highlighted examples of this from Kyrgyzstan and Cameroon, but also focused on the shrinking space for CSOs in a number of countries. For their part, partner countries talked about making real progress on their commitments, but there seems to be less evidence of change at the donor level. How to get the private sector working for development, and how to better measure CSO Enabling Environment and address the shrinking space for civil society, were two recurring themes in the discussion. CPDE used the opportunity to launch an updated set of CSO Key Asks for a Transformative Global Development Agenda.

dividing line

Copenhagen Conference on Inequality

In mid-November, CCIC was invited to participate alongside 200 other civil society organizations (CSOs), from 43 countries, in a High-Level CSO Conference on Inequality. Beyond sharing intelligence and information on the most recent developments at the UN on the post-2015 process and outcomes (including the Secretary General’s Synthesis Report), the meeting provided an opportunity for groups to dig down on eight thematic areas related to the social, economic and environmental aspects of inequality. As Danish State Secretary for Development, Mr. Martin Hermann, noted in a high-level panel, reducing inequalities is a precondition for finishing the Millennium Development Goals, and inequalities in their current form represent an unacceptable denial of human rights. The CSO outcome document, which emanated from the meeting, reflects this sentiment, and notes the importance of maintaining inequality as both a stand-alone goal post-2015, and a cross-cutting theme. The meeting was convened by Beyond 2015, Global Focus, The Danish 92-Group, the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the UN City in Copenhagen.

dividing line

15th Summit of La Francophonie

15th Francophonie SummitOn November 29-30, the 15th Summit of a La Francophonie was held in Dakar, Senegal. Prime Minister Stephen Harper led the Canadian Delegation in the Dakar Summit, Women and Youth in La Francophonie: Agents for Peace and Development. Canada emphasized its foreign policy and development priorities: maternal newborn and child health and the promotion of the Francophonie based on an economic plan. Canada committed to strengthening the private sector and improve the business climate to foster sustainable economic growth, in Francophonie developing countries. Key declarations and resolutions can be found on DFATD’s website. Canada also signed foreign investment promotion and protection agreements with three sub-Saharan African countries: Côte d’Ivoire, Mali and Senegal. And finally, Michaëlle Jean was awarded the role of the Secretary General for La Francophonie.

dividing line

Echoes from International Civil Society Week 2014

International Civil Society Week 2014From Nov.19-25, CCIC participated in the International Civil Society Week in Johannesburg, South Africa, along with 700 delegates and social activists from around the globe. The event was organized by CIVICUS, the World Alliance for Citizen Participation (CCIC is a member of CIVICUS). United under the theme “Citizen Action, People Power”, participants came together to share bold and creative experiences, explore new tools and resources for civic engagement and discuss how to face the shrinking space for civil society in most countries. The event provided a wide variety of workshops and featured inspiring keynote speakers such as Graca Machel, Jay Naidoo and Maina Kiai. Photos, videos –and more!- of the conference can be found here.

dividing line

World Humanitarian Summit 2016 – Consultations begin

2016 will see the first ever World Humanitarian Summit (WHS), in a context in which actors are struggling to respond to growing humanitarian needs and rapidly evolving landscape of humanitarian emergencies. The Summit will focus on four themes: Reducing vulnerability and risk, humanitarian effectiveness, transformation through innovation, and serving the needs of people in conflict. Humanitarian actors in Canada can participate in the Regional consultation in Budapest, Hungary, on February 2-4, 2015. The Humanitarian Response Network of Canada (a rebranded version of the Policy Action Group on Emergency Response) will be sending two participants. Ahead of the regional meeting, an online consultation will also be available for those who can’t go to Budapest. Also, members of the WHS secretariat were present at the highly successful second Canadian Humanitarian Conference.

dividing line

Mapping the Coalition Landscape

Twenty-five Canadian coalitions working on international issues met in mid-November to discuss, “Fostering new synergies, filling emerging gaps.” The meeting, organized by CCIC, had four clear objectives: to map areas of work where different coalitions are focusing; reflect on conditions of success when working in coalitions; explore possible synergies across different coalitions and how best to incubate these; and evaluate where CCIC can have the most impact in its coalition work. To ground the discussions in theory and practice, keynote Jared Raynor, from the TCC Group, spoke about the winning conditions for building effective coalitions; and representatives from the Food Security Policy Group, the Canadian Network on Corporate Accountability and the new Alliance for Women’s Rights, reflected on their experience in trying to effect change. Finally, consultant Jared Klassen presented the findings from “The Coalition Landscape,” a study done by CCIC to map current priorities, gaps, and areas of overlap, among Canadian coalitions, and to assess the implications for CCIC. The final report is due out in January.

dividing line

Up for Debate Campaign officially launched!

Up for DebateAfter months of preparation, the Alliance for Women’s Rights, a non-partisan alliance of over 100 organizations (women’s groups and their allies) launched on Nov.4 on Parliament Hill, the Up for Debate campaign, with women EDs from the YWCA, Oxfam Canada and the Native Women’s Association of Canada speaking at the press conference. Up for Debate is calling on all federal party leaders to commit to participate in a nationally broadcast leader’s debate focused on policies and issues that impact women’s lives once the election is called. The Campaign platform asks all parties to: get serious about ending violence against women and girls; take action to end women’s economic inequality; and support women’s leadership. CCIC is actively involved in Up for Debate Campaign and sees it as a natural link and complement to its own post-2015 campaign. To learn more about the campaign and on how to get involved, please visit

dividing line

Updates from the CCIC's Americas Policy Group

APG members from across the country came together for the group's Fall Members Meeting in late October. The gathering provided a space for information sharing and strategizing around APG's countries of focus and trends in the region more broadly. Sessions focused on: International investment arbitration disputes; the current political landscape in Colombia; Canadian policies and human rights in Honduras; and peace, justice and community resistance in Guatemala. A session was also dedicated to strategizing around the upcoming Canadian federal elections. During their time in Ottawa, APG members met with MPs and staffers from the Conservative, NDP and Liberal parties to discuss foreign policy priorities in their respective platforms. In November, APG coordinator Brittany Lambert returned from maternity leave, taking over from Stacey Gomez who had filled the position for the past year.

dividing line

ACF-DFATD Meeting – A Renewed Dialogue

The ACF met with DFATD on October 30, 2014. The objective of this meeting was to promote open dialogue between DFATD and CCIC-ACF on Africa issues/priorities and Canadian engagement in the region. DFATD shared updates on the amalgamation process and their priorities in the region. The ACF shared their reflections on their recent Annual Colloquium and ODA to Africa. In addition, breakout groups on specialized thematic topics were used to dig deeper into specific thematic areas. The meeting was well attended, with 50 representatives from DFATD and 40 representatives from the ACF. DFATD has agreed to co-organize an annual ACF-DFATD meeting. Meeting reports will soon be available on the ACF website.

dividing line

Second dialogue between APWG members and DFATD in 2014

APWG members met with DFATD representatives on December 5th to discuss issues related to development and human rights in the Asia-Pacific region. After a short panel discussion during which DFATD provided updates on the priorities of the department in Asia as well as on the process of the merger, discussions continued in four parralel breakout groups on Bangladesh, Burma, Indonesia and the Philippines. More than 60 people attended this half-day event and the table  is set for the organization of more frequent dialogues over the coming months.  A meeting report will be circulated to APWG members in the coming weeks.

dividing line

New on CCIC’s blog

CCIC BLogAn article written by CCIC’s staff Charles Saliba-Couture for the Huffington Post Québec blog “Un seul monde” was re-posted on CCIC’s blog last month. Entitled “Où va la cooperation internationale au Québec et au Canada” the article provides a detailed list and analysis of all the changes that have impacted the sector in recent years. Another article on Canada’s response to the Ebola crisis was published by Mia Omara: “Canada’s Lackluster Response to the Ebola Crisis”. Organizations and individuals interested in publishing an article in CCIC’s blog can contact Chantal Havard.

dividing line

Coalition Profile: Reality of Aid

(To advance its policy agenda, support existing networks and have a greater impact, CCIC is involved in many coalitions. Each month we will be featuring one of them in Flash! so that you can get involved with them too.)

Reality of AidThe Reality of Aid Network (RoA) is a major South/North international non-governmental initiative, which focuses exclusively on analysis and lobbying for poverty eradication policies and practices in the international aid regime. It brings together over 170 member organizations, including more than 40 civil society regional and global networks, working in the field of international cooperation in the 28 donor countries of the OECD, and in Europe, the Americas, Africa, and in the Asia/Pacific. In the past 20 plus years, The Reality of Aid has built a track record of independent assessment of aid policies and practices, accompanied by constructive dialogue with policy makers at national and international levels. Since 2000, it has published a major biennial report focused on topical issues, including most recently development effectiveness, democratic ownership, and aid and the private sector. On December 4, The Reality of Aid Network released its 2014 biennial Report, focused on “Rethinking Partnerships in a Post-2015 World: Towards Equitable, Inclusive and Sustainable Development.” As in past years, the Report includes a Political overview, Global Aid Trends chapter, thematic contributions and country chapters – focused on the current state of play on aid (including on Canada). CCIC is the non-European OECD country focal point and sits as the Vice-Chair on the International Coordinating Committee.

dividing line



CECI: A history of giving

This month, CCIC met with CECI Executive Director Claudia Black. Claudia discussed the key to the success of CECI, the organization’s approach to capacity building, the upcoming 4th International Forum "Great Development Debates" organized jointly with WUSC, as well as its international volunteer program UNITERRA... among other things!


CCIC: CECI has been active in international development for more than 50 years. How do you explain the success and the longevity of the organization?

CECI has always been able to adapt to evolving contexts, to be innovative and proactive.   We have been through several stages in our history that show our organization's capacity to adapt.   From a religious movement founded by the Jesuits, and where training and raising awareness on international cooperation were the main issues, CECI  was incorporated in 1968 and launched an important international volunteer program, which has grown continuously, and a large program of project management  financed by Canadian bilateral aid.  In the 1980s, CECI decentralized its operations and opened offices abroad in more than ten countries, creating a CECI network.

Read the full interview...

dividing line


Write For Rights Campaign - Amnesty International

Write for Rights Campaign


Amnesty international recently launched Write for Rights campaign inviting people to mark December 10th, International Human Rights Day, by writing a letter to a real person facing a terrible human rights injustice. The campaign was the largest grassroots human rights event in the world and featured various cases from around the world, including China, Saudi Arabia, South Africa… and Canada!

dividing line

Journées québécoises de la solidarité internationale – AQOCI

Jounée québécoise de la solidarité internationale




The Association québécoise des organismes de coopération internationale (AQOCI) and its members were successful in organizing the 18th International Cooperation Days (Journées québécoises de la solidarité internationale) last November, with a special event in Montreal bringing together Canadian aboriginal women and women from the global South. Various activities were organized by AQOCI members around the theme of youth and the future of international cooperation, in Montreal and Quebec City, as well as in regions.

dividing line

Great Development Debates: 2015 International Forum, January 23-24, Montreal




Organized by WUSC and CECI, this international development conference will convene over 400 development practitioners, academics, researchers, government representatives, students and professionals to participate in the debates on topics such as:

The event promises to catalyse pointed and passionate discussion on emerging trends and evolving approaches in international development. View the Forum Schedule at a glance and check back often for updates on debates, sessions and workshops.

dividing line

Even it Up Oxfam Campaign on inequality – and report

Even it up


As part of a ten year campaign focused on addressing economic inequality, Oxfam International along with Oxfam Canada and Quebec has launched a new report looking at the growing issue of economic inequality. The Report, endorsed by a broad array of global figures, lays out a set of recommendations for tackling this issue.



dividing line

MiningWatch presents the case of Canada at the IACHR

On October 28th 2014, MiningWatch Canada (along with JCAP and CCIJ) presented at the Inter American Human Rights Commission (IACHR), in a hearing entitled Canada: Impacts of the Canadian Mining Companies in Latin America. The presentation discussed issues outlined in the report Human Rights, Indigenous Rights and Canada’s Extraterritorial Obligations, sent to the commission by the Canadian Network for Corporate Accountability.  Presenters discussed Canadian government supports to the Canadian mining industry in Latin America and related violations, Canada's Corporate Social Responsibility strategy and its lack of remedy for mining-affected communities, civil litigation in Canada against mining companies, and attempts at legislative reform in Canada related to the Canadian mining industry abroad. As the IAHRC wrapped up its 153rd session, it called on states (specifically naming Canada) to prevent mining abuses and hold the companies and state agencies responsible for abuses to account.

dividing line

Equitas receives the 2014 Rights and Freedoms Prize

Equitas - 2014 Rights and Freedoms PrizeEquitas – International Centre for Human Rights Education has been awarded the 2014 Rights and Freedoms Prize  by the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse du Québec (CDPDJ). This prize recognizes an individual or an organization that makes a significant contribution to the defense and promotion of human rights and freedoms in the province. The jury selected Equitas for the outstanding achievements and the innovative nature of its Play it Fair! and Speaking Rightsprograms. Over the past 10 years, over 500,000 youth and children have been reached by these programs in Canada.

dividing line

AKFC and CAJ partner for new international development reporting fellowship

Aga Khan Foundation Canada and the Canadian Association of Journalists are offering a new opportunity for journalists in Canada to push the boundaries of reporting on the developing world. The two organizations are launching the Fellowship for International Development Reporting. The fellowship offers recipients $25,000 to undertake a substantial reporting project which helps Canadians develop a greater understanding of the complex issues facing the developing world. Applicants are encouraged to submit their proposals for a project about a development issue within a developing country or region. Applications are welcome from Canadian citizens and permanent residents with at least five years of experience as working journalists, which includes both freelancers and staff reporters. The deadline for entries is 11:59 p.m. EST on Jan. 19, 2015.

dividing line

Three organizations merge to launch Action Canada for Sexual Health and Rights

Action Canada for Sexual Health and RightsAction Canada for Sexual Health and Rights, a progressive, pro-choice charitable organization, is now officially launched and ready to speak up for sexual health and rights in Canada and globally. The new organization – a merger of three of Canada’s leading voices on sexual health and rights (Canadians for Choice (CFC), the Canadian Federation for Sexual Health (CFSH) and Action Canada for Population and Development (ACPD))  – is an opportunity for a strengthened voice in international and national-level policy, education and access and a leap forward when it comes to including Canadian perspectives in the global movement for sexual and reproductive health and rights.

dividing line


OECD lessons on engaging the public

OECD lessons


The OECD has released a new publication laying out twelve lessons learned from OECD DAC peer reviews in terms of engaging the public – its first such publication on the topic.



dividing line

Ten short winning films on Climate Change

Ten short winning films on Climate Change


Ten film crews. Ten different countries. Ten winning films.


dividing line

The McLeod Group Policy Briefs on International Development Issues 

The McLeoad Group


In the lead-up to the 2015 federal election, the McLeod Group will be producing a number of policy briefs on international development issues that confront Canada and Canadians, including A Development Policy For Canada and A Primer on Foreign Aid


dividing line

Broadbent Institute report on CRA audits

The Broadbent Institute report on CRA audit


This report provides evidence suggesting biased scrutiny of charities that are critical of the government by the CRA. Highlighting a pattern of claiming 0% political activity, it also raises questions about the accuracy of the filings of 10 right-leaning charities to the CRA with respect to their interpretation of the CRA’s definition of “political” activity.



dividing line

New book! Rethinking Canadian Aid

Rethinking Canadian AidA new book entitled Rethinking Canadian Aid edited by Stephen Brown, Molly den Heyer and David R. Black has been published by the University of Ottawa Press. This book contributes to a “rethinking” of Canadian aid on four levels. First, by undertaking a collective rethink of the foundations of Canadian aid. Second, through an analysis of how the Canadian government is rethinking Canadian aid. Third, by rethinking where Canadian aid is or should be heading, with recommendations for improved development assistance. Finally, by highlighting how a serious rethink of aid itself is required.

dividing line

A World That Counts: Mobilizing the Data Revolution for Sustainable Development

A World that Counts

The report summarizes the reflections of 20 international experts convened by the Secretary-General on how the data revolution can contribute to sustainable development. The Report profiles key challenges for a data revolution to occur and provides a series of recommendations on how to address this.


dividing line

Will GMO Feed the World?

Will GMO feed the world


This new report by the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network notes that the promise of Genetically Modified crops to feed the world overlooks the real causes of hunger (poverty and inequality), and disregards the harmful impacts of using GM technology.



dividing line

Stories of innovative democracy at local level

Stories of innovation democracyThe FACTS Initiative, RESOLIS and CIVICUS have recently published a special issue of the FACTS Report and RESOLIS Journal on local democratic innovations. After an open call for articles, submissions received from all around the world and a peer-reviewed selection, 14 articles were selected. Each one captures, analyses and shares examples of local innovations seeking to improve public governance, citizens’ participation and participatory democracy, such as participatory budgeting (Lisbon, Nigeria, India, China) to local development initiatives (Niger), distribution of public services (Madagascar, India) and improving the dialogue between government authorities with citizens (Oregon, France, Argentina),

dividing line

If you have an item for Flash, send it by e-mail to Chantal Havard. Please note that Flash items should be no longer than one paragraph.