Canadian Federation of Voluntary Sector Networks


The Canadian Federation of Voluntary Sector Networks was formed in July, 2002 by 13 organizations, most of which were young (less than 5 years old) or emerging voluntary sector networks. These local, regional, provincial and territorial networks founded the Federation as a mechanism to build connections with each other, share resources and information, build individual and collective capacity and identify opportunities for collaboration.


The Canadian Federation of Voluntary Sector Networks’ mission is to support and promote the significant contributions of Canadian voluntary organizations to community vitality by growing and strengthening local, regional, provincial and territorial voluntary sector networks.

“Networks” bring together voluntary organizations from different sub sectors, within a defined geographic area, deal with cross-cutting sector-wide issues and build connection, cohesion, and capacity, within voluntary organizations and the voluntary sector as a whole.


  • Increase the connections and forms of collaboration between existing and emerging coalitions across Canada.
  • Mobilize voluntary sector coalitions to effectively impact public policy.
  • Influence the development of meaningful and appropriate investments in Voluntary Sector Networks
  • Promote, recognize, and celebrate the voluntary sector.
  • Promote approaches to collective brokering of products, services, and benefits needed by the organizations in the sector.
  • Support and strengthen leadership in the sector.
  • Identify and secure long term resources to connect, grow and sustain voluntary sector networks.


Since its inception in 2002, this virtual “network of networks” has maintained an active and vital network of organizations that provide mutual support, share information and resources and have collaborated on a number of key initiatives. With a focus on building connections, capacity and cohesion, Federation members supported the development of the Voluntary Sector Gateway (a web-based portal;)participated in two multi-year projects aimed at improving awareness and compliance with CRA reporting requirements; and initiated the “Gatherings of Counterparts”, bringing together voluntary sector members and representatives from provincial and territorial governments to explore building stronger relationships between governments and the sector. The third Counterparts Summit will be held in Vancouver in November, 2010.

CCVO's Role

CCVO was a founding member of the Federation and its CEO, Katherine van Kooy, has been a member of the Federation’s Steering Committee since 2006.


Katherine van Kooy
403.261.6655 ext 224