Virtual Engagement Resource Centre for All

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Understanding public engagement and global citizenship Tools and guidance Measuring progress Resources from the Government of Canada External resources Going further Promotional tools, International Development Week

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Welcome to VERCA - The Virtual Engagement Resource Centre for All.

The process of engaging the Canadian public for international aid contributes to promoting global citizenship among the population. Canadians become aware of Canada's international aid efforts, including the Feminist International Assistance Policy and, more broadly, of Canada's contributions to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Ultimately, by better understanding how local issues relate to global issues, Canadians will be inclined to take actions that will contribute to a peaceful, prosperous and inclusive world.

The PE Toolkit is a collaborative and evergreen platform to support Canadian organizations that want to engage Canadians on global issues. It has been designed for a wide audience of practitioners, regardless of their level of familiarity with the field of public engagement. The tools and resources presented in this package have been developed by Global Affairs Canada, Canadian partners, other federal entities and international organizations.

Becoming "aware" of Public Engagement

1.1 - Understanding public engagement and global citizenship

  • A working definition of "public engagement" activities
  • What is a “global citizen”?
1.2 - Basic guidelines
  • Planning stage: Preparing and planning your initiatives
  • Good practices to consider
  • Types of engagement initiatives: Examples and tips
1.3 - Measuring progress
  • Evaluating results of engagement
  • Theory of change and indicators of success

"Understanding" Public Engagement

2.1 – Resources from the Government of Canada

  • Tools from Global Affairs Canada
  • Tools from other departments
2.2. – External resources
  • Resources from the Global Hive
  • Other resources from partner organizations
  • Resources from International organizations
2.3 – Going further
  • Public engagement framework
  • Case study of exemplary PE initiatives
  • Understanding how Canada engages with civil society
  • Importance of collaboration
  • Get in touch with your provincial or regional council
  • Connect with other organizations across the country


Putting Public Engagement "into action"


3.1 – Celebrate International Development Week International Development Week (IDW) is an annual initiative held during the first full week of February since 1991 to engage Canadians on global issues.

This uniquely Canadian tradition also aims to celebrate Canadian contributions to poverty reduction and international humanitarian assistance.

Across the country and abroad, Canadian individuals and organizations mark this week by participating in and organizing IDW activities.  

IDW is Global Affairs Canada’s flagship public engagement initiative and development communications campaign.

It represents a great opportunity for the government and organizations to engage their audience on global issues, on top of being an excellent platform to showcase public engagement and global citizenship initiatives.

During the next edition of IDW, consider taking part in the celebrations by organizing your own activity. You can have a look at the IDW activity planning guide, use the IDW visual identity and add your activity to the IDW online calendar. Do not hesitate to contact the IDW team by email at idw-sdi@international.gc.ca to get more information on how to get involved during the week..

3.2 – Your stories and ideas

Share your development stories, videos and photos to be included in Global Affairs Canada’s development stories repository:

  • Send an email to stories-histoires@international.gc.ca with any relevant content, from small anecdotes about individual projects to sweeping trends in agriculture and education.
  • Consult these tips and guidelines on how to create effective stories.
  • Be sure to include a note on the program or project, for example, the date, location, speaker’s name and title, and whether a credit is needed.
  • Please note that video should include natural sound whenever possible and be free of narration, music and titling; photos should not include text.
  • Remember to inform and copy your project officer at Global Affairs Canada (GAC) if your story is related to a GAC-funded initiative.
  • Once you contact us, we will provide you with a link where you can upload your content.  
  • Note that GAC will always consult with you before sharing your content with media or on any of our channels.
3.3 – Stay in the loop

Share your public engagement tools and resources.

To keep yourself updated whenever new information is added to the toolkit and If you wish to contribute to this toolkit or collaborate with us (new ideas, links, suggestions, etc.), send an email to engagement.dev@international.gc.ca (in French or English)