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Call for Peer Reviewers
Imagine Canada is inviting qualified candidates from Canadian charities and nonprofits to apply to become peer reviewers for our new Standards Program. The Standards Program offers a Canada‐wide set of shared standards for charities and nonprofits wishing to strengthen and demonstrate their effectiveness in the areas of board governance, financial accountability and transparency, fundraising, staff management, and volunteer involvement. For more information about the Standards Program, visit our website.
Decisions on accreditation under the Standards Program are made by panels of 8 to 10 peer reviewers. Each panel is responsible for making decisions on approximately 25 applications. Individual reviewers are required to complete a detailed review of 7 to 10 applications. After individual reviews are complete, the Peer Review Panel meets as a group to make the accreditation decisions on these applications.
Individuals selected through this call will be invited to join a pool of potential peer reviewers, from which reviewers for specific Peer Review Panels will be selected. Reviewers must be available to participate in all aspects of a given review process.
Timing and Time Commitment
The next review process will take place between December 2012 and March 2013. Reviewers participating in this process will be required to: (1) attend an orientation webinar in December and a training webinar in January; (2) review of 7 to 10 applications over a period of 5 weeks beginning in late January 1; and (3) participate in a 2-day Peer Review Panel meeting that will be held in Toronto the last week of February or the first week of March2.
Peer reviewers are appointed by the Standards Council, which will base their decisions on the following criteria:
- leadership/senior management (staff or volunteer) experience in a charity or nonprofit;
- experience/expertise in one or more areas covered by the Standards (governance, financial accountability, fundraising, paid staff management, volunteer involvement);
- appreciation and knowledge of the diversity of Canada’s charitable and nonprofit sector;
- understanding of the regulatory/standards/legal environment within which charities and nonprofits operate;
- understanding of the funding and financing environment in which charities and nonprofits operate;
- demonstrated experience operating in a consensus decision-making process;
Knowledge/experience with standards and/or accreditation systems; experience managing conflict of interest situations; and bilingualism (French/English) will be considered assets.
In determining the membership of a given Peer Review Panel, the Standards Council will also consider the importance of including individuals with diverse backgrounds. To this end, it may consider the following:
- experience with different sizes and types of organizations;
- experience with both charities and nonprofits;
- experience with organizations that manage their own standards/accreditation systems;
- experience with federated organizations;
- gender diversity; and/or
- regional diversity.
Applications for the Standards Program are submitted online and peer reviewers are required to use our online evaluation system to review and comment on the application materials. Therefore, participation as a peer reviewer requires access to a computer with an internet connection and a reasonable level of comfort with technology.
Confidentiality and Non-Disclosure
Peer reviewers are required to sign confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements before they are given access to applications.
This is a volunteer role. Peer reviewers will receive training and be reimbursed for eligible expenses (e.g., travel costs) according to Imagine Canada’s internal policies.
Application and Recommendation Process
Individuals interested in joining our pool of potential peer reviewers are invited to complete the online application form.
Note that all applicants must provide a recommendation letter from the board chair or most senior staff person of a Canadian charity or nonprofit organization. Recommendation letters should include information on how long the person has known you, in what capacity they know you, and why they think you would make a good peer reviewer. Letters should be on letterhead and signed by your reference (electronic signatures are acceptable).
Applications, with letters, must be submitted online by October 5, 2012.
For further information contact: email@example.com
 Reviewers who participated in the first Peer Review Panel indicated that it took them 3 to 4 hours to review each application for a total time commitment of 24-40 hours for this part of the process.
 All reviewers must attend this meeting in person.
Did you know that there are 161,000 nonprofilts and charities in Canada?
Did you know that Canada’s nonprofit and voluntary sector is the 2nd largest in the world?
The sector represents $79.1 billion or 7.8% of the gross domestic product
The sector is larger than automotive and manufacturing. It generates $112 billion in revenues and employs 2 million people
Canadians donated $10 billion in 2007
Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick have the highest donor rates.
Canadians volunteered 2.1 billion hours in 2007
Young Canadians aged 15 to 24 are more likely to volunteer than Canadians in any other age group
One percent of nonprofits command 60% of all revenues flowing to the sector
Canadians with the lowest household incomes give a greater percentage of their income than others
Saskatchewan has the highest volunteer rate in the country, followed by the Northwest Territories and the Yukon
Those exposed to giving and volunteering activities early in life are more likely to continue those behaviours as adults