Alberta's non-profits are facing challenging times.

Leaders from Alberta nonprofits gathered in Calgary on Wednesday to hear the results of the Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations annual State of the Sector Survey.

A startling 30 per cent of Albertans expect to access charitable services to meet their basic needs over the next six months. This means many people who have never accessed services before are having to do so.

An annual survey of almost 1,500 Alberta nonprofits shows the sector is facing higher demand services, at the same time nonprofits are dealing with rising hate and anger, and unprecedented effects of climate change.

Alberta’s nonprofit sector spans everything from food and mental health to childcare, seniors care, housing, immigrant settlement, recreation, environment, and the arts. 

"We had a record-breaking response to our 2023 survey and gained valuable insights about what is impacting nonprofit leaders and employees, from climate change to safety concerns," says Karen Ball, President & CEO of the Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations.

"While there are certainly challenges ahead, we recognize that nonprofits have been proactive in working collaboratively and sustainably for the benefit of all Albertans. The nonprofit sector is vital. We contribute $5.5 billion to Alberta’s economy annually, employ nearly 300,000 Albertans, and touch the lives of every single Albertan."

Notable highlights of the annual CCVO State of the Sector Survey include:

- Just over 1/3 of CCVO survey respondents experienced a big impact from rising hate and anger in 2023. This is concerning as people are less likely to volunteer for causes that they are passionate about if they are worried about their own safety.

- 74% of CCVO survey respondents felt climate change had impacted their operations in 2023. Smokey skies across the province this past summer led to cancelled programming and fundraising events.

The full State of the Sector report can be found at 

"It’s important that we acknowledge times are tough for our sector, and although revenues are beginning to stabilize, we are facing the hard realities of skyrocketing expenses impacting our operations and increasing demand for our services," says Ball.