Nassau, The Bahamas, (8 November  2021): To address the social, cultural, and economic issues that face The Bahamas, One Eleuthera Foundation (OEF), The Organization for Responsible Governance (ORG), Civil Society Bahamas, and Intel Cay are launching a national survey of not-for-profits, faith-based organizations, and other mission-based groups.

The survey will assess organizational information about these groups, including the type of services they provide, how many persons they benefit, the role they play in our communities, and the size of their staff and budgets. This information will help provide a clearer picture of how many civil society groups are operating across the archipelago and their impact.

The survey was developed by OEF, ORG and Civil Society Bahamas.  Intel Cay, one of the top data collection and survey research companies in The Bahamas, has partnered with the groups to ensure the survey is accessible and user friendly. The survey is being sent out via the social media and websites of the charities, while Intel Cay will be phoning the organizations using its call center and directly assisting participants with completing the survey.

The National Civil Society survey can be accessed at \https://www.research.net/r//JWQMZLC.

Over 1000 groups that have actively operated across The Bahamas will be targeted to take the survey. The range of Not-for-profits (NPOs) surveyed will include groups that provide services related to community development, gender-based violence protection, environmental conservation, advocacy for the disabled, and youth, culture, governance and sports development.

The survey is a follow-up to a 2019 exercise to map the existing civil society, which was organized by ORG, and funded by The Templeton Religion Trust. This initiative was spearheaded by Mark Palmer, who currently leads the OEF Social Enterprise Accelerator (OEFSEA) program and sees this initiative as immediately essential.

???After the dual crisis of Hurricane Dorian and the COVID-19 pandemic, our country has developed many needs,??? Palmer said. ???Whether these are health-related, social, cultural, environmental, or economic, NPOs and civil society organizations (CSOs) can make a critical difference in our communities. We as a sector need to know which groups are out there and what they can offer so we can better organize efforts for CSO???s to support The Bahamas.

To date, a comprehensive list of NPOs and CSOs operating in The Bahamas does not exist, although the 2019 mapping exercise identified 800+ groups. The Not-for-Profit Act enacted in 2020 required all not-for-profit groups to re-register, provide validating information and agree to adhere to a level of financial regulation. ???This survey will also help us understand which groups were able to make it through the registration process.??? offers Mark.

Matthew Aubry, ORG???s Executive Director, pointed out that gathering this information also has implications for greater partnership among Civil Society, Government, and The Private Sector.

???During the recent national crises, there have been numerous examples of not-for-profit???s working with the other sectors to make a significant difference. Whether it be the NPO-led Food Distribution Task Force helping 57,000 families survive through the COVID crises or the charities involved in the ongoing massive relief effort in the wake of Hurricane Dorian, or the arts and cultural groups contributing to the growth of the Orange Economy through new and innovative business models. Civil Society in The Bahamas has tremendous yet untapped potential. A better understanding of the Civil Society Sector provides a direct link to understanding the capacity of The Bahamas to manage its challenges and help our nation and its people to thrive.???

As a private partner to the initiative, Intel Cay has dedicated its technical expertise to properly gather and archive the information collected to support future analysis of the sector.  The data will be used to support a further study on the social and economic impact of Civil Society.

???Intel Cay quote here)

The survey will run for the next four weeks. This week Intel Cay???s team will be reaching out via phone to all not-for-profits, faith-based and mission-based organizations to offer assistance with completing the survey. If groups wish to participate independently, they can access the survey on the Civil Society Bahamas website or at https://www.research.net/r/JWQMZLC

Any groups with questions on the survey or other private sector partners wishing to support this project can contact Mark Palmer at info@oneeleutherafoundation.org.