Work Integration Social Enterprises (WISEs) are social enterprises that have a social mission to directly support vulnerable community members who are facing exclusion from the labour market. WISEs involve these individuals in producing and selling goods or services, most often in a paid capacity, with the objective of supporting their integration into the work environment and society. WISEs generally have one of two long-term goals: providing individuals with secure, stable employment within the organization or supporting transition to the labour market.
Currently, several longitudinal studies are underway across Canada to better understand the impacts of WISEs on vulnerable populations. CCEDNet is leading one of those research studies, looking at Alleviating Homelessness (Research Overview), in partnership with:
Running from 2017 to 2022, this research project has completed initial baseline surveys with research participants and a team of Community Researchers is connecting with enterprise and comparison group participants to complete annual followup surveys. Our Community Researchers have all worked at enterprises and bring peer experiences to their role. We value the contribution of those who complete surveys and provide gift cards as honorariums.
Here are some of the stories of these WISEs and others, and the lives they've transformed.
- Queen's University WISE Impact research project
- University of Toronto WISE research
- SRDC WISE research
Funded in part by the Government of Canada's Work Integration Social Enterprise Program.