CCEDNet Manitoba in the News

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Follow the links below to access articles and media items written by or featuring CCEDNet Manitoba staff:

Manitoba social enterprise sector is abuzz this fall

  • October 22, 2014
  • In this interview with Enterprising Non-profits (ENP) Canada, Sarah Leeson-Klym explains the current state of both the CCEDNet hosted ENP Manitoba program and Manitoba's social enterprise sector.

City hall can help jobless

  • September 8, 2014
  • Kirsten Bernas and Darcy Penner wrote this op-ed piece for the Winnipeg Free Times highlighting how "Winnipeg's inner-city neighbourhoods have been quietly transforming -- creating employment, reducing poverty, reversing neighbourhood decline and preventing crime" and calling on the City of Winnipeg to support these efforts. 

Brendan Reimer on Canada’s social enterprise ecology: The past, the present crossroads and what gives him hope for the future

  • August 6, 2014
  • "As Brendan moves on from [the roles of Manitoba Regional Director of CCEDNet and ENP] to join the Assiniboine Credit Union later this month, the ENP-CA news service caught up with him to discuss some of his insights on Canada’s social enterprise ecology over the time of his engagement: its state when he joined, the present crossroads and what gives him the most hope for the future."

Leveraging our City’s Potential

  • July 19, 2014
  • Brendan Reimer was a guest on the Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce's radio show, BOLD (680 CJOB), to discuss the topic of Leveraging our City’s Potential. "In our network there's a lot of people who have a lot of incredible bold ideas that are different," Brendan says. "One example is social enterprise: non-profit businesses who exist to create jobs for people who other folks are just not going to hire, they have several, multiple barriers to employment. We know the charitable model won't necessarily work, it's a short term Band-Aid but it doesn't change the reason people are excluded or poor in the first place, and we know the limitations of the private sector to solve complex social problems. But here you have a very innovative model where people have blended the social model with a business model to achieve outcomes and to create opportunities for people that neither of those other models could ever achieve."

Job-training initiative shows early success

  • June 20, 2014
  • The Government of Manitoba announces details on the Maintoba Works! and Rent Assist programs. Kirsten Bernas, Research and Policy Advisor with CCEDNet, says "these initiatives will help ensure that low-income Manitobans with barriers are in better position to access and succeed in training and employment opportunities."

Province Introduces New Programs to Help Employment and Income Assistance Participants Find Good Jobs

  • June 19, 2014
  • "Community stakeholders asked for an increase in shelter benefits for those on social assistance, and we are very pleased the government has responded with a benefit that will help not only those on social assistance, but low-income Manitobans more broadly,” said Kirsten Bernas, research and policy manager, the Canadian Community Economic Development Network.

ENP Canada gathering sets sights on national impact 

  • March 28, 2014
  • A meeting of ENP Canada's national affiliates seeks to set directions for the federation's future. Sarah Leeson-Klym represented CCEDNet and ENP Manitoba at the 'energizing' meeting.

Manitoba’s commitment to creating social enterprise strategy applauded

  • March 19, 2014
  • Brendan Reimer applauds the Manitoba government’s recent commitment to creating a social enterprise strategy as an important element in developing a strong "ecosystem" of support for social enterprise. 

A leg up for the needy: Poverty advocates cheer long-overdue allowance boost

  • March 7, 2014
  • "Instead of moving immediately to the 75 per cent target, community economic development expert Brendan Reimer said it appears the province chose to expand the rent allowance to include more working poor, which he said was a reasonable approach that helps people move from welfare to work."
    Click here for more on the Manitoba Budget 2014

Social procurement breakthroughs occur in Manitoba, but it’s only ‘the tip of the iceberg'

  • February 13, 2014
  • Drawing from an interview with Manitoba Regional Director, Brendan Reimer, Michelle Strutzenberger highlights where the Manitoba government has advanced progressive procurement policies in the province, while also analyzing how we could further push purchasing decisions to include social and environmental considerations.

Holiday gift guides from across Canada make it easier to “buy social” this season

  • December 18, 2013
  • Social Enterprise Canada promotes holiday gift guides published across Canada that help point gift-givers toward social enterprises, co-operatives, and other socially responsible businesses. Included in this list is CCEDNet's Manitoba Community Economic Development Holiday Guide, which also includes a list of holiday events.

Taking co-operative enterprise to the next level

  • October 1, 2013
  • Taking co-operative enterprise to the next level requires a stronger ecosystem of support and cohesion for Manitoba's co-operative sector. Brendan Reimer draws inspiration from Italy's co-operative sector, where every co-op is mandated to contribute 3% of their profits toward co-op development.

New site a 'virtual water cooler' for Canada's social enterprise sector

  • September 16, 2013
  • "The new site is a valuable resource for the sector as it provides a single window for accessing a wide range of very important and effective tools and resources for our work, regional co-ordinator for the Canadian Community Economic Development Network Brendan Reimer sums up. “It is a good-looking site, clean and clear, and it is easy to find the things you are looking for,” he adds."

Fast Facts: Policy and Poverty in Manitoba 2013 Budget

  • May 14, 2013
  • CCEDNet-Manitoba's Kirsten Bernas and outgoing CCPA Executive Director Shauna MacKinnon tackle the provincial budget that was released in April. With an eye on policy-reduction, they provide a lucid reflection on the strengths and weaknesses within the budget, and how these could impact poverty levels in the province.

BUILD on Global News

  • April 26, 2013
  • Using the personal story of Jesse Ducharme, Katie Chamberlain explores how BUILD - Building Urban Industries for Local Development - demonstrates the holistic approach to social enterprise. Along with commentary from CCEDNET-Manitoba's Brendan Reimer, Jesse's story shows us how BUILD is improving the lives of its participants, their families, and their communities.

Spark on Community Connections CTV News

  • March 26, 2013
  • The Spark Behind the Dreams of Community Organizations: CTV News features Spark - A Service of the Canadian CED Network on an segment of their Community Connections program. The segment highlights a volunteer match brokered by Spark between Jason Kasper of Ideate Design and the Canadian Muslim Women's Institute. Spark has helped create 150 matches between local community organizations and volunteers with specialized skills in diverse fields such as architecture, IT services, public relations, and accounting.

Pallister wants to raise housing allowance

Manitoba Tories call for welfare rent increase

  • March 18, 2013
  • Winnipeg Free Press and CBC news coverage quotes Brendan Reimer's reaction to Brian Pallister's support for raising the rental allowance.

It's About Choices: Raising the Rental Allowance

  • March 20, 2013
  • Written by Brendan Reimer
  • Published as a Letter to the Editor in the Winnipeg Free Press

Creating Opportunities With Green Jobs: The Story of BEEP & BUILD

  • February 6, 2013
  • Written by Kirsten Bernas
  • Published by the CCPA

City cuts impede fight against poverty

  • January 22, 2013
  • Written by Kirsten Bernas
  • Published in the Winnipeg Free Press

City no longer a player in poverty reduction

  • January 20, 2013
  • Kirsten Bernas explains how Winnipeg is falling further behind other cities when it comes to poverty reduction with proposed budget cuts.
  • Published by the CCPA in an edition of their Fast Facts

Coverage of Make Poverty History Manitoba's Raise the Rates campaign:

  • January 6, 2013
  • Written by Paul S. Graham. Includes a video interview with Kirsten Bernas, who speaks about Make Poverty History Manitoba's Raise the EIA Rental Allowance Rates campaign.
  • Community News Commons
  • January 4, 2013
  • Written by Bernice Pontanilla, with comments from Kirsten Bernas
  • Printed in the Metro News Winnipeg
  • January 4, 2013
  • Written by Gabrille Giroday, with comments from Kirsten Bernas
  • Printed in the Winnipeg Free Press
  • January 4, 2013
  • Written by Jim Bender, with comments from Kirsten Bernas, who said, “We want to highlight the need for a longer-term solution that would assist our poorest Manitobans.”
  • Printed in the Winnipeg Sun
  • January 3, 2013
  • Written by Bernice Pontanilla, with comments from Kirsten Bernas
  • Printed in the Metro News Winnipeg
  • December 29, 2013
  • Written by Sarah Petz, with comments from Kirsten Bernas
  • Printed in the Winnipeg Free Press

BUILDing savings, community, and the planet

  • December 10, 2012
  • Ryan O'Connor profiles Building Urban Industry Labour Development (BUILD)
  • Published in the Our West Central Times community newspaper (page six)

Let's Put the Horse Before the Cart:  Why We Need Investment in Social Infrastructure

  • October 9, 2012
  • Kirsten Bernas and Lynne Fernandez (of CCPA Manitoba) explain the importance and value of public investments in social infrastructure such as housing and childcare.
  • Published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives as a Fast Facts paper. 

Solving Homelessness

  • October 3, 2012
  • Kirsten Bernas talks about addressing the root causes of housing issues and homelessness, on behalf of Make Poverty History Manitoba
  • Radio interview on CBC's Up To Speed (scroll through the table on contents to stream the interview)

Striking the Right Match

  • October 1, 2012
  • Assiniboine Credit Union profiles a Spark match between Champion Taylor, an ACU employee, and Mediation Services.

Addressing Homelessness in Winnipeg

  • October 1, 2012
  • Kirsten Bernas appears on CKUW's Mud & Water radio program to discuss the importance of moving towards real solutions for solving homelessness in the city

Homelessness-Moving toward real solutions

  • September 27, 2012
  • Kirsten Bernas, Policy Advisor at CCEDNet, writes about the importance of looking to meaningful solutions to homelessness in Winnipeg, including the need to raise EIA rental allowances for individuals relying on employment assistance.
  • Article appeared as an edition of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternative's Fast Facts, and was also published as an op-ed in the Winnipeg Free Press and Our West Central Times community newspaper

Profile on Bicycle Assembly and Maintenance 

  • September 20, 2012
  • The article highlights CCEDNet's role in supporting the Learning Enrichment Foundation's innovative social enterprise, Bicycle Assembly and Maintenance (BAM). BAM provides Ontario youth life with life skills, provides job training, and teaches them basic bicycle repair 
  • Appeared in the National Post

Exciting Development

  • September 4, 2012
  • Letter to the Editor by Brendan Reimer on energy efficiency work by social enterprises to reduce poverty
  • Appeared in the Winnipeg Free Press (scroll half-way down the page to read)

The Right Thing to Do 

  • July 30, 2012
  • Letter to the Editor by Brendan Reimer importance of providing meaningful pathways out of poverty, particularly for refugees, through education and employment opportunities
  • Appeared in the Winnipeg Free Press

Assignments for Skilled Volunteers: A Winnipeg Example

  • May 14, 2012
  • Geoff Ripat, Spark Program Coordinator, discusses Spark's work connecting volunteers with specialized skills to community organizations that need the skills
  • Appears on

Inner City Voices (radio)

  • April 30, 2012
  • Brendan Reimer discusses the social enterprise sector in Manitoba on CKUW's Inner City Voices program
  • Note: The first 3 minutes of the file are silent, but the program starts at the 2:40 mark

Cuts of Co-ops Costly

  • April 16, 2012
  • Brendan Reimer writes about the federal government's decision to terminate the Co-op Development Initiatives and make significant cuts to the Rural and Co-operatives Secretariat and the impacts these decisions will have in Canadian communities.
  • This article was printed on, CCPA's Fast Facts, CCPA's Monitor, and the Winnipeg Free Press.

Manitoba Budget 2012 Press Releases

  • Distributed to the press on April 16, 2012
  • In CCEDNet's press release, Brendan Reimer discusses the need for long-term investment in strategies that address the root causes of community challenges
  • Click here to download the press release from Make Poverty History Manitoba, which quotes Kirsten Bernas, CCEDNet's Policy Advisor

Garden Concept Gains Momentum

  • April 11, 2012
  • Written by Rae Hathaway
  • Published on

Manitoba Budget 2012: Gas And Cigarettes To Cost More As Government Tables Deficit Document
(April 2012)

  • Written by the Canadian Press
  • Appears in the Huffington Post, Global News and CBC News
  • Includes comments from Brendan Reimer on the 2012 Manitoba Budget

Putting your worries to work
(April 2012)

  • Written by Marlo Campbell
  • Appears in Uptown Magazine
  • Paul Chorney credits the inspiration of bringing the Transition Town movement to Winnipeg on a 2010 CCEDNet workshop

Social enterprise study reveals an 
”overlooked” sector’s economic impact
(April 2012)

  • Written by Lorraine Stevenson
  • Appeared on
  • Highlights CCEDNet's recent research on the social enterprise sector in Manitoba, with comments from Brendan Reimer.

Sparking change for local agencies
(April 2012)

  • The Winnipeg Foundation
  • Appears in the Spring 2012 edition of Working Together magazine
  • Profiles a recent volunteer match made by Spark - a service of CCEDNet

Value for Money: Changing the way we measure results
(March 2012)

  • by Kirsten Bernas
  • Appears in SEE Change Magazine

Business done differently 
(Jan. 2012)

  • by Marlo Campbell
  • Appears in CanStar Community News
  • With comments from Brendan Reimer, mentioned Peg City Co-op and Organic Planet

International Year of the Co-operative Launched
(Jan. 2012)

  • by Lorraine Stevenson
  • Appears in the Manitoba Co-operator
  • With comments from Brendan Reimer

Sometimes a bright idea needs a Spark 
(Dec. 2011)

  • by Matt Prepost
  • Printed in the Winnipeg Free Press
  • Profile of CCEDNet's Spark service

Spark'ing Opportunities 
(Dec. 2011)

  • by Christine Hanlon
  • Profile of Geoff Ripat, coordinator of Spark
  • Printed in On Manitoba

Believe people can create change
(Oct. 2011)

  • by Brendan Reimer
  • Reflections Magazine

Community Economic Development 
(Oct. 2011)

  • by Lisa Helps
  • Lisa Helps is a Vancouver City Councillor
  • With comments from Brendan Reimer

Election forum tonight focuses on poverty, hunger
(Sept. 2011)

  • Appears in the Winnipeg Free Press
  • With comments from Brendan Reimer on the importance of including a dialogue on poverty reduction in the Manitoba election.

Arctic Co-operatives Limited Awarded 
(Jul. 2011)

  • by the Co-operative Educators Association
  • With comments from Brendan Reimer

BUILDing Capacity: Building Homes and Transforming Lives 
(Mar. 2011)

  • by Ryan O'Connor (CCEDNet staff)
  • Profiles of MGR and BUILD, CCEDNet members
  • Article written as part of the Manitoba Social Innovation Stories Project

Profit, Puritans and iPads
(Feb. 2011)

  • by Matt Koop-Pearce
  • With comments from Brendan Reimer

Making waves out of ripples 
(Aug. 2010)

  • by Brendan Reimer
  • Issue of Fast Facts for the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

The Canada-EU Trade Talks And Procurement 
(Aug. 2010)

  • by Brendan Reimer
  • Video

Harper sells Canada out to European-based multinational corporations 
(Jun. 2010)

  • by Dylan Penner
  • With comments from Brendan Reimer

Buy-local policies growing 
(Jun. 2010)

  • by Brendan Reimer
  • Printed in the Winnipeg Free Press and the Brandon Sun

For the people, by the people 
(Nov. 2009)

  • by Marlo Campbell
  • Coverage of CCEDNet's annual Manitoba CD/CED Gathering
  • Printed in Uptown Magazine

The Christmas Hamper that gives twice 
(Dec. 2005)

  • by Brendan Reimer
  • Issue of Fast Facts for the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives