About Cooperation Canada
Since 1968, Cooperation Canada (formerly known as the Canadian Council for International Cooperation) has brought together more than 80 organizations working in the international development and humanitarian sector. We advocate for these groups by convening sector leaders, influencing policy and building capacity. Together, we work with partners both inside and outside Canada to build a world that’s fair, safe, and sustainable for all.
We collaborate with various organizations, governments, citizens, and community groups, but every interaction is defined by one promise: higher human capacity to apply creative solutions and meaningful action to the world’s most complex development challenges.
We know we’re better together — which is why all of our mandates focus on cooperation.
Our policy analysts are always learning and building expertise. They share insights, on-the-ground results, emerging research, and expertise with policy makers to ensure Canada’s international commitments are effective and meaningful.
We support our Working Groups, giving those who are passionate about solidarity, social justice, and human rights the space and connections they need to make a difference.
Lastly, we strengthen the efficiency and impact of humanitarian aid workers around the world by helping them work together, elevating their ability to respond to those affected by disasters and emergencies.
Through cooperation, we’re connecting people, amplifying voices, and driving change for a bold and sustainable development agenda.
History of Cooperation Canada
CCIC (now Cooperation Canada) was established in 1968 in Ottawa, under its first executive director Angus Archer, and with a clear mission statement: to end global poverty and to promote social justice and human dignity for all.
The organization focused its first steps on establishing clear networks with the government and membership partners through publications, meetings and consultations. Many of the activities concentrated on events ran by the humanitarian agencies of the United Nations, as well as public engagement. The goal was to engage the government delegations who attended those conferences through direct lobbying on site, while running public advocacy campaigns in Canada.
One of Cooperation Canada’s successful public engagement campaigns was “Miles for Millions,” originally introduced in 1967, in which a group of student volunteers visited local schools and gave presentations on international development issues. The purpose of this project was to raise awareness among youth and to inspire young Canadians to get involved with the NGO sector in Canada.
Having received its first generous grant of $80,000 in 1971, Cooperation Canada funded the Development Education Animateurs Program (DEAP) for four consecutive years. The idea was to send a number of enthusiastic participants across the country to run educational development activities for Canadians nationwide, an initiative that allowed Cooperation Canada to establish its first provincial offices.
CCIC faced a major financial crisis in 2008 and 2009 when the newly elected government withheld funding of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and stopped supporting environmental and human rights projects. As a result of this, Cooperation Canada was deprived of its dominant revenue stream and had to halt the majority of its programming.
In order to recover from the crisis, a total restructuring of Cooperation Canada took place, including the nomination of Julia Sánchez as the President-CEO of the organization in 2011. Eager to bring Cooperation Canada back on its feet, Julia recovered relations with the government, improved the organization’s corporate image, and established a brand-new membership system that satisfied members and circumvented dependency on government funding. The organization changed its name to Cooperation Canada in October of 2020.
Cooperation Canada is proud of the achievements and the immense impact it has been able to make globally. With the support of its passionate and determined team, its loyal member organizations, and its engaged partner organizations, Cooperation Canada looks forward to celebrating another 50 years of collaboration and co-operation in international development.
Cooperation Canada Strategic Plan 2018 – 2023
Cooperation Canada’s Strategy 2018-2023 recognizes and responds to the challenges this landscape presents. Just as important, it acknowledges and advances the inherent opportunities: to enhance our sector’s engagement with local, domestic, and global actors in a spirit of inclusion and solidarity; to lead and inform our sector in maximizing our impact as development actors; and to catalyze new and dynamic approaches to programming, policy, and organization.
With this vision, Cooperation Canada positions itself to continue being a leader in and for Canadian civil society, and a champion for a fairer, more sustainable, and safer world.
President - CEO
Deputy Director, Programs & Operations
Finance & Administrative Manager
Policy & Research
Ana de Oliveira
Community Engagement Coordinator
Web & Graphic Design
Humanitarian Response Network
Digna – Preventing Sexual Exploitation & Abuse
Digna Program Manager
Digna Program Assistant
Cooperation Canada’s Interns
- Valérie Charest (Digna Intern)
- Emmanuel Galleguillos-Côté (Digna Intern)
- Qianhui Ma (Digna Intern)
Board of Directors 2020-2021
mission inclusion / Co-Chair
Pacific Peoples’ Partnership/ Co-Chair
Islamic Relief Canada
SOS Children’s Villages / Treasurer
Manitoba Council for International Cooperation
Plan International Canada
Avocats Sans Frontières / Governance Chair
British Columbia Council for International Cooperation
Nobel Women’s Initiative
Saskatchewan Council for International Cooperation / Membership Chair
“Cooperation Canada plays an exceedingly useful role as the umbrella, bringing together diverse CSOs in dialogue with one another, and in providing overarching analysis around ‘big picture’ issues relating to global development.”