The Social Enterprise Ecosystem project (S4ES) launched on May 10th, 2017, is a groundbreaking partnership between the Canadian Community Economic Development Network, the Commerce Solidaire, Buy Social Canada, Social Enterprise Institute and Social Value Lab that seeks to establish a more coherent ecosystem in collaboration with the many other social enterprise developers throughout Canada.
This project connects training, marketing, and impact measurement resources for social enterprises anywhere in Canada. S4ES is mandated to address five of the "Six Pillars of the Supportive Ecosystem for Social Enterprise", as determined by the Social Enterprise Council of Canada. The objective is to scale up accessible, self-sustaining platforms for social enterprise skills development and market access that will strengthen the pillars of a social enterprise development ecosystem.
With support from Employment and Social Development Canada, the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation and the Mental Health Commission of Canada, S4ES will take an integrated approach to developing business skills, markets, finance and impact practice, to scale up accessible, self-sustaining platforms for social enterprise skills development and market access to strengthen the pillars of Canada's social enterprise development ecosystem.
The program will introduce key innovations, including:
- An online learning platform;
- A national social enterprise directory and e-commerce site
- Social purchasing and branding certification
- Tools and resources to strengthen social impact measurement by social enterprises
- A social enterprise grant fund
- A social enterprise accelerator
- Thematic and regional communities of practice