KEYs Professional Development

Six people sitting at a conference table listening to a speaker intently.

KEYs – Keep Educating Yourself

United Way Perth-Huron, with the help of our sponsor Libro Credit Union, is dedicated to offering affordable and local professional development for our non-profit community. Keep Yourself Educated (KEYs) is a series of workshops to help you learn new skills or brush up on ones you already have. Examples of past seminars include: The Board and Governance Partnership; Rise and Shine online with Brittlestar; Grant Writing; Understanding Financials, Employee Retention, Managing Stress.

Nonprofit and Charitable Network  is committed to acting as a facilitator and catalyst to help the network access resources for organizational capacity building. The content on this page highlights resources from our Workshops.  Our goal is to begin to strengthen Perth Huron nonprofit and charitable sector as a key priority of our community.

March Workshop: Workforce – the Impact of Gender & Mental Health

COVID – 19 has heightened labour force concerns. Join us in discussing two key areas:

  1. Work force mental health
  2. The extent to which women workforce participation has been impacted


  • Gateway Centre Of Excellence in Rural Health – Leith Deacon
  • Four County Labour Market Planning Board – Tingting Zhang & Kee May Ip


*Click here to view workshop recording 

February Workshop Series: Board Governance

Covered the basics of Board Governance in the not-for-profit sector including;

  • Overview of various Governance Models and Documents, (including Letters Patent and Bylaws)
  • Board Recruitment
  • Orientation
  • Development
  • Evaluation
  • Roles
  • Responsibilities
  • Boards and Staff

Workshop presenters

  • Neil Hannam, MA, CEO: Neil has over 25 years of experience in the not-for-profit sector. Before establishing V Formation in 2013, he spent the previous 12 years in healthcare fundraising
  • Karen L. Ormerod, MM, Principal Consultant: Karen is a visionary leader and organizational change agent who has worked in the not-for-profit and charitable sector for over 40 years

If you are interested in receiving these session recordings please contact

November Workshop: Storytelling and the Use of Social Media

Emily Baillie presented a workshop on storytelling and social media that:

  • Looked at making meaningful connections with stakeholders using social media
  • Shared tips and tricks designed to help inspire comments, shares, donations, sign-ups and more
  • Discussed how to tell your organization’s story using major social media platforms such as:
    • Instagram
    • Facebook
    • Twitter

Visit our Non Profit Networking Meetings page to learn more and view resources

KEYs – Roster of Professionals

Professional development and training is vital to an organization’s well-being. It can improve employee performance, build morale and increase productivity. It can also be prohibitively expensive for many organizations, especially not-for-profits. That’s where the Keep Educating Yourself (KEYs) program comes in. 

The KEYs roster includes volunteers willing to give their time to help local organizations. If an organization finds a volunteer on the roster with skills they need to build new knowledge, help them solve a problem or to strengthen existing skills, contact United Way to coordinate.

United Way is always looking for more dedicated professionals to become part of the KEYs roster. To volunteer your skills as a presenter, facilitator or mentor, email Please indicate your area of expertise and the kind of training you could deliver along with the number of hours you would be available.

Dariel Bateman


Dariel Bateman BA, MA, BEd has a background in community development, as well as board experience in the arts and social services sectors - like Carya — a large social services agency in Calgary. She also has practice as an elementary school teacher and has assumed project leadership for United Way Calgary specific to long-term outcomes for children and the reduction of poverty. She was also the CEO of an early literacy organization. She is a wife, mother, grandmother and recent resident of Stratford


Community engagement, CEO support and problem solving, development of collaborative relationships, staff relationship building, supporting grant writing and in consultation ‘naming’ the issues


  • Mentorship
  • Training
  • Workshops
Kristin Beaton


Kristin is a program evaluator with the Huron Perth Public Health. She has been working in the field of evaluation since 2012 and has recently received her Credentialed Evaluator (CE) designation from the Canadian Evaluation Society. She has a Masters of Public Health from the University of Waterloo. A focus of her evaluation practice is on building capacity for evaluation, with an emphasis on evaluation results that are used to support Evidence-Informed Decision Making.


As an evaluator Kristin is able to support building an organization's capacity for analysis and evaluative thinking in staff, with the goal of creating a structured learning, organizational culture.


  • Training
  • Workshops
Ken Clarke


Ken Clarke has a Ph.D. in Psychology, which includes developmental psychology, cognitive psychology, statistics and research design from McGill University. He has worked for 20 years as a professor at number of universities and colleges across Canada and the United States - teaching and doing research in the field of psychology. Additionally, he has worked 17 years as a data analyst for various research projects at various institutions, including United Way Perth Huron's Social Research and Planning Council and 12 years at Perth Care for Kids.


Ken is able to provide individual or group assistance on psycho-economic issues that are pertinent to the community. He is able to make clear sense of complex numerical data.


  • Workshops
  • Training
  • Mentorship
Ryan Erb


Ryan is a long-time resident of Stratford with more than 25 years of non-profit management, community development, fundraising and marketing experience. Currently, he serves as the Executive Director of the United Way Perth-Huron. Ryan has been, and continues to be, an active volunteer with other not-for-profit organizations including; The Rotary Club, The Foundation for Enriching Education, Living Wage Canada and his family church. In these roles and others, he has amassed more than 30 years of non-profit board experience. He holds an M.A. in Leadership, a B.A. in Social Development/Peace and Conflict and a B.R.E. in Counselling.


As an experienced governance practitioner, Ryan is able to perform, utilize, and teach the 10 Basic Responsibilities of non-profit boards. He is also able to examine the role and responsibility of the board in CEO succession – providing a framework to comprise a plan and build upon it and he can employ effective strategic planning skills, developing vision, mission, values, strategic direction, and board level objectives.


  • Workshops
  • Training
  • Mentorship
Brent Furtney


Brent has a BA in Honours History and Political Science, as well as a Diploma Option in Legal Studies from Wilfrid Laurier University. He is currently in the process of obtaining his Masters in Management specializing in co-operative and credit union business models from Saint Mary’s University in Halifax.  

Brent has worked for Libro Credit Union in various roles over the past 6 years. His experience includes sales, governance, training, corporate procurement, project management and corporate affairs. Brent currently serves as the Manager of Advocacy and Government Relations as part of Libro’s Brand team.

Due to current schooling requirements Brent has recently left a few community based boards which included The Huron Perth Centre and the Stratford Public Library Board of Directors. Born and raised in Perth County, Brent currently resides in Stratford with his family and loves to travel, listen to music, play sports, hang out with friends and enjoy everything Perth County has to offer.


  • Strategic Planning
  • Governance and Board Areas
  • Project Management
  • Corporate and Public Affairs
  • Legislation and Regulation Analysis


  • Workshops
  • Calls Regarding Issues or Issue Management
  • Mentoring
  • One of One Consultation
  • Board Meeting Support
Sonya Heyen


Sonya has a post-graduate certificate in Public Service and a Bachelors of Education, giving her unique insight into how people learn and absorb information. She has six year’s experience working as a team member of United Way’s Communication team.


Sonya knows non-profits have limited resources for marketing. She can show you how to work with low-cost and free design software such as Publisher, PowerPoint and Canva to develop professional and pleasing social media, brochures, posters and campaign letters to help bolster your organization’s reputation and public awareness. Her eye for design will help ensure the services you offer shine through in the material you create.


  • Training
  • Social media page clean-up
Debra Swan


Debra Swan is a pioneer in the field of capacity building with 25 years of experience working with the most vulnerable sectors.  She has assisted communities, organizations and individuals across Canada effect positive change from the strengths within. Service is customized to each client depending on the strengths and challenges they face. Customers are delighted by her strength-based methodology and through it create opportunities where there were barriers. Debra's sense of humour and highly interactive, fun approach makes every project a great experience for all involved!


Delivering interactive and comprehensive education sessions and workshops – individually or in a group setting. Board and Senior Management Development and Support, as well as practice in Community Assessment Services, Program Creation and Evaluation, Partnership Development and Sustainability.


  • Mentorship
  • Expertise
  • Training
Sean Woodhead


Sean has 15 years experience spanning various elements of business development, government relations, workplace and vocational training and governance. Sean is currently the President of the Ontario Council for University Lifelong Learning—the provincial organization that represents university continuing education in Ontario. He is also a program manager at York University School of Continuing Studies, where he oversees the curriculum, instruction, and strategic initiatives for a variety of digital technology programs. Sean has completed an M.Ed. Educational Leadership & Policy from University of Toronto and an Honours BA Political Science from Brock University. He is completing his Ph.D. Education at York University, with some research focus on the external and internal factors that shape institutional change. 


Sean's specialty areas include: reviewing and renewing organization purpose, mission, vision, and strategic pillars; developing, reviewing and revising policies, procedures and business processes and vocational/staff training in in-person and digital formats. 


  • Team consulting
  • 1-on-1 mentorship


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