In partnership with Volunteer Canada and the HR Council, Imagine Canada has established a Standards Program to guide Canadian charities and nonprofits through common standards of practice and to strengthen public confidence in the sector. The main objective is to increase transparency of charitable organizations in five fundamental areas: board governance, financial accountability and transparency, fundraising, staff management, and volunteer involvement. The goals of the Program are to increase organizational transparency in these areas and to strengthen public confidence in individual organizations and the sector as a whole.
Our journey began in December 2016 when the CHS applied for accreditation. The CHS had to demonstrate compliance with 73 standards. This process gave the CHS the opportunity to update and compare its policies against leading practices, and to provide direction to both the CHS Board of Directors and staff. In addition, the CHS felt it was important to provide its stakeholders with a level of confidence that the organization had a strong framework.
After a year of intensive work in reviewing and adopting current and new policies, the CHS submitted its application and obtained its accreditation in December of 2017. Being accredited allows the CHS to use the Imagine Canada Trustmark for a period of five years, contingent on demonstrating ongoing compliance via the completion and submission of an annual compliance report.
The use of the Standards Program Trustmark signals that an organization has demonstrated compliance with each of the Imagine Canada Standards.