Ontario MPPs unanimously support Nonprofit Week of Appreciation

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December 2021

More than one million people work in Ontario’s nonprofit sector. They are highly skilled, well-educated, and widely credited with helping the most vulnerable in our communities, especially through the pandemic.

But unlike essential frontline workers in other sectors, nonprofit staff go unrecognized for their contributions. That changed when Bill 9: An Act to Proclaim Nonprofit Sector Appreciation Week passed third reading in the Ontario legislature with unanimous, all-party support.

“We all need to appreciate the hard-working professionals in the nonprofit sector, especially during the pandemic period when its services are so much needed and volunteers and donations have dropped,” said Daisy Wai, MPP for Richmond Hill. “The Nonprofit Sector Appreciation Week will help ignite the passion and the performance of workers who are understandably exhausted and feeling burned out. We need to celebrate these Invisible Champions in our communities. Their sense of dedication, powered by their personal vision and mission has supported them through many challenges, but our appreciation and support for them will go a long way.”

Bill 9, which was championed by MPP Wai through a Private Members Bill, will see the Nonprofit Sector Week of Appreciation take place the third week of February in perpetuity. The first Appreciation Week will take place from February 14-20, 2022. The week is intended to recognize the exceptional individuals in the nonprofit sector whose work transforms the lives of individuals, families, and communities, as they work alongside communities.

The Bhayana Family Foundation, in partnership with United Way of Greater Toronto and the Ontario Nonprofit Network, originally hatched the idea for a province-wide week of recognition for the staff in their sector. According to Raksha M. Bhayana, CEO of the Bhayana Family Foundation, “The staff of Nonprofits are extraordinary. They are deeply caring, guided by a mission to enhance the quality of life of individuals and communities. Staff in the sector are driven by the best parts of the soul and a passion for social impact. MPP Daisy Wai’s passionate championing of Bill 9 ensures that the sector is honoured for its economic and social contribution to society – making the invisible champions visible.”

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