Canadian Philanthropy in a Connected World by Hilary Pearson

26 May 2020

Founding President of Philanthropic Foundations Canada, member of the Board of Directors of Myriad Canada and author of numerous articles on foundation philanthropy, Hilary continues to write and moderate wide-ranging conversations on philanthropy and how Canadian foundations can deal with this crisis, read her most recent blog :

We don’t exist in a bubble in this world. We exist in a web.

This is how we need to think about our situation as a philanthropy sector, as a country, as a region and as human beings on our planet.

The inevitable push in this pandemic is towards closure, towards turning inward and locking down, into seeing the world as “us” and not “them”. It’s inevitable but it’s not irresistible. In fact, ignoring the world is the worst thing we can do to ourselves. Solidarity, connection, and mutual support are the way to get through this. It’s not an option, it’s a must to maintain our web, not to retreat into our bubble.

This was a central thread in the wide-ranging  conversation which I moderated on April 30 for Philanthropic Foundations Canada. The topic was whether and how Canadian foundations can fund globally during the pandemic. But the very thoughtful discussion evolved into being about much more than global funding opportunities. We discussed our opportunity as a country to re-imagine and to rebuild not just our own communities but the global community. We have a chance to bring Canadian values and skills of humility, willingness to listen, to learn and to partner to the job of mending the gaps in the global web.

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