The Community Sector Network of PEI recently submitted our pre-budget recommendations ahead of the January 10, 2023 deadline.
CSNPEI Pre-Budget Submission
The community sector of PEI is a vibrant mix of organizations that are creating change and supporting some of the most vulnerable Islanders. We bring together the expertise of hundreds of volunteers and employees, strong social capital, and financial leverage to develop and deliver innovative solutions for the public good while contributing to the province’s prosperity. Our recommendations for the 2023 budget ensure that both the sector and provincial government are best serving Islanders through timely and concrete actions.
To ensure the 2023 budget is both responsible and flexible to navigate the province through these uncertain times, we urge you to:
- Reclassify 30% of all current project-based funding that is destined for nonprofits to be eligible as core funding
- Create a “home in government” for the 1700 nonprofits in PEI
- Strengthen the island community by bolstering volunteerism
Recommendation 1 – Reclassify 30% of all current project-based funding that is destined for nonprofits to be eligible as core funding
Nonprofits are an important, successful, and growing part of the island. They provide essential services and support to individuals and communities. They also offer employees and volunteers broad-based job experiences and rewarding career opportunities.
Despite these many successes, the PEI nonprofit sector is not growing as fast as the rest of the economy or the nonprofit sector nationally. PEI nonprofits face challenges securing stable funding. Inadequate and uncertain funding impedes their ability to serve the community. The significant amount of time they spend applying for grants or fundraising is time not directly spent on achieving their mission. These difficulties have been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and Hurricane Fiona.
Reclassify 30% of all current project-based funding destined for nonprofits to be eligible as core funding. Transitioning to stable, long-term, and flexible core funding for nonprofits would reflect the actual cost of delivering services and programs, keep pace with inflation, respond to emerging needs, and reduce administrative burdens on nonprofits.
Recommendation 2 – Create a “home in government” for the 1700 nonprofits in PEI
Currently, there are no ministries responsible for the well-being of nonprofits as a sector in PEI. While nonprofits often have great relationships with their most immediate ministries, more complex and collaborative, innovative work requires a minister-level appointment and office to lead, listen, and enable innovation without redtape.
Establish a “home” for the sector within the government in the form of a body tasked with:
- Regularly convening an interdepartmental working group,
- Convening provincial/federal/territorial meetings,
- Creating policies that cultivate a strong and resilient nonprofit sector
- Develop policies addressing broad underfunding and systemic inequity
Recommendation 3 – Strengthen the island community by bolstering volunteerism
Volunteers dedicate their time and expertise to making PEI a better place to live, work and succeed. Volunteers account for over 50% of nonprofit paid and unpaid hours. Volunteerism rates and hours have been declining in Prince Edward Island. COVID-19 has further reduced the number of volunteers for nonprofits. Without volunteers, the workload and negative toll on staff mental health will continue to grow.
Create a provincial volunteer recovery strategy in consultation with the nonprofit sector to address the negative impacts of the pandemic on volunteerism and prepare for future emergencies.
For more information:
Alexia Riche, Executive Director
Tel: 902 330 3351, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org