COVID-19 Response, Resources and Updates

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March 16, 2020

Dear members and friends,

We are writing today to send positive wishes to each of you, and to share the precautionary steps OCIC is taking to protect our community and to contribute to provincial, national and international efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019).

This is a challenging time that calls upon each one of us to act in the best interests of all people, and the planet. OCIC is committed to supporting you through this unprecedented period however we can. Over the past few weeks we have been in conversation with many of you and with our colleagues from across Canada to better understand the broader issues the international cooperation and humanitarian sector is currently facing and is likely to face in the days ahead. There are numerous internal considerations for organizations, as we work to ensure the safety, security and well-being of staff, volunteers, interns, partners, program participants, beneficiaries, and other key stakeholders. Many of us are developing new protocols and policies for working safely within our offices or remotely, and reflecting on how best to support our community as we navigate a period of increased uncertainty.

We are also all adjusting our approaches to and timing of key events, activities and programs, including those that involve students, volunteers, the public and elected officials in Canada, and especially how they could impact the world’s most vulnerable. While there is no one-size-fits-all solution to this pandemic, together we can take leadership within our organizations and communities to help mitigate against panic and discrimination, and to increase public awareness and solidarity.

We want you to know that all OCIC staff are currently required to work from home and will generally be accessible via email during business hours. For the time being, OCIC staff will not be engaging in work-related face-to-face activities and travel. Instead, over the coming days we will be adapting our programs and services to convene our capacity building, multi-stakeholder dialogue and public engagement activities using online platforms and other innovative means. As this is a very fluid situation we will continue to monitor ongoing news and recommendations issued by the Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario, and will communicate with you on an ongoing basis.

We have prepared a Google doc as a means of sharing reputable information about COVID-19 that we believe will be relevant for our members. This is not intended to be an exhaustive list, but rather a place for you to share key news, resources and organizational policies. Please add items you feel are relevant and useful for others, and share it within your networks.

As always, please do not hesitate to reach out to us by email if there are ways that we can support you. Together, we are stronger.

In solidarity,

Kimberly Gibbons
Executive Director

Jessica Ferne
President, OCIC Board of Directors

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Upcoming Webinars

OCIC Member Roundtable for COVID-19

April 14, 2020 | 2:00 – 3:30 PM (EST)
Organizer: OCIC

Join us for OCIC’s next Member Roundtable on organizational responses and needs related to COVID-19, with a particular focus on a collaborative communications and public engagement possibilities, focused on global solidarity and partnership. We particularly encourage senior leaders, communications and PE staff from OCIC member organizations to join this discussion.


Webinar Recording

COVID-19 Information & Resources: Global

COVID-19 Information & Resources: Canada

Additional Resources

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Find out more about our members’ COVID-19 responses and announcements:



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