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Unblocking Social Innovation, Empowering Communities

Banner image with webinar information and speaker picturesIn 2018, the Social Innovation and Social Finance Strategy Co-Creation Steering Group released its report, Inclusive Innovation: New Ideas and New Partnerships for Stronger Communities.  This comprehensive report contains 12 key recommendations that would help communities tackle their toughest social and environmental challenges through skill development, unlocking private capital, increasing market access, and regulatory changes.  In other words – it would be a game changer!

The federal government has committed to developing a Social Innovation and Social Finance Strategy (SISF Strategy) and, in 2018, announced a $755M Social Finance Fund and $50M Investment Readiness Program.  BUT, the Social Finance Fund has yet to be rolled out, after a very successful 2-year pilot, the Investment Readiness Program is set to expire in March 2021, and there has been little action on the remaining recommendations.  

The game has not changed….YET.

We have a window of opportunity to push the government to implement a comprehensive strategy, expand the Investment Readiness Program, and accelerate the Social Finance Fund.  Over the spring and summer, several mobilizing efforts, including by the People-Centred Economy Group, Impact Response, the National Impact Investment Practitioners table, former members of the SISF Steering Group, and others, have urged the federal government to accelerate SISF as part of COVID recovery.  This is a critical moment for a concerted push for continued action by the federal government to ensure that SISF is part of budget 2021.  

On November 2 we heard from social innovators about how SISF supports their work, why they’re pushing for action now, and how you can be part of a campaign that will help you have your voice heard on this strategic issue!

Guest Speakers:

  • Béatrice Alain, Executive Director, Chantier de l’économie sociale 
  • Victor Beausoleil, Co-founder & Executive Director, Social Economy Through Social Inclusion
  • Rosalind Lockyer, Founder & Executive Director, PARO Centre for Women’s Enterprise
  • Wendy Keats, Executive Director, Co-operative Enterprise Council of NB
  • Raissa Marks, Government Relations Director, Canadian Community Economic Development Network


Land As Commons: Building the New Economy

Image banner with information about speakers and event1:00pm to 4:00pm Eastern Time

Sunday, October 25, 2020 is the date of the 40th Annual E. F. Schumacher Lectures. Kali Akuno and George Monbiot will speak addressing the topic “Land as a Commons: Building the New Economy.” The virtual event will take place from 1pm to 4pm Eastern Daylight Time. The two talks and the live-streamed discussion following will be free to all registered.

The topic is land access, the problems generated by a concentration of ownership, and ways of creating a more fair and equitable system. The Schumacher Center’s own response to the inequities in land access is to call for a voluntary gifting of land into regional community land trusts where its use can be allocated through lease agreements in a socially determined manner outside of market forces.

Register for "Land As Commons: Building the New Economy"

Fall for Social Acquisitions: Designing an Inclusive Recovery

Banner image with text that says fall for social acquisitions, designing an inclusive recovery11:00am to 12:30pm Eastern Time

A growing network of Canadian organizations and professionals are exploring Social Acquisitions for Business Recovery (SABR), a strategy that sees conventional enterprises transition into social purpose enterprising forms (like a co-op, a social enterprise, a charity, a non-profit, or any combination of the same).

Every month, we convene the network to do four things: connect, inform, collaborate, and learn. This month's theme will be: Designing an Inclusive Recovery. We will be exploring ways that social acquisitions can be leveraged to build back better, more resilient, and more inclusive.

Join at 11am EDT on October 22 2020 to hear about hard work being done and opportunities being created to Activate and Design SABR solutions, participate in some engaging social innovation activities that will spark your creativity, and as always, forge powerful new connections with Canadian professionals who are leading the charge in Social Acquisitions for Business Recovery. All are welcome!

Register for "Fall for Social Acquisitions"

What If the Tools and Templates Were Available to Speed Our Progress?

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10:00am to 11:30am Pacific Time
1:00pm to 2:30pm Eastern Time

The good news is that they are! Buy Social Canada and others who are active in the Social Value Marketplace have already done great work to create tools and templates to address legal concerns, shape deals between social purchasers and suppliers, and structure financing that suits the aims of social value creation.

We know that in the first two workshops, the sparks of new relationships will fly. As collaboration moves from connection to contracting, we will all need templates and tools we can use as a starting point for thriving relationships moving forward.

As a result, this third workshop will offer a marketplace of tools and templates for you to explore. We will create space for people to access the support they need and try out hands-on approaches to build the social value marketplace.

Register for "What If the Tools and Templates Were Available to Speed Our Progress?"

Register for the entire 3-part series

What If We Could Build Relationships and Bridge Gaps Between Ecosystem Players?

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10:00am to 11:30am Pacific Time
1:00pm to 2:30pm Eastern Time

There are many, many, moving parts in the Social Value Marketplace economy. No two communities or situations are the same. Depending on where you stand in the ecosystem your experience, frustrations, hurdles, and possibilities will look different from others.

Each of us has many things to consider in our own ‘silos’. Maybe some of the answers reside in other parts of the ecosystem. Understanding what purchasers, enterprisers, and financiers are grappling with … together … we can come to grips with things better by crossing those boundaries. The more diversity we can invite into this workshop the better.

What if we cleared the air on what is frustrating you, what your concerns are, and the hurdles you face? What if you were in contact with people who shared those experiences and are also moving through them? What if you could better understand what your partners really have to offer and need?

How can we find, amongst us, what we most need to be freed to play our own part more effectively? What if we found ways to collaborate to advance our mutual goals?

In this workshop you will have an opportunity to air your frustrations, name your hurdles, ask for what you need, and offer what you have to bring to the table … in order to grow your place in the Marketplace Revolution.

Register for "What If We Could Build Relationships and Bridge Gaps Between Ecosystem Players?"

Register for the entire 3-part series

What If The Stories of The Social Value Marketplace Were Told Better and More Broadly?

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10:00am to 11:30am Pacific Time
1:00pm to 2:30pm Eastern Time

If all of us who are advancing the Social Value Marketplace worked collectively to share our stories, we could shift the narrative. Every story is important. Our stories convey the diversity of motivations and perspectives that bring us together and why the Social Value Marketplace is so important. Our stories can expand understanding and our sphere of influence. They can bring new players to the table and spark collaboration.

What if we explored all the ways we are and could share our individual stories AND the story of the movement in general? What if we leveraged all of our mutual story channels, websites, social media platforms, and email lists in collaborative ways to support one another and our cause? What would success look like?

How can we use stories to expand the circle, influence public policy, market our enterprises, find customers, find suppliers, close deals, and get things done?

In this workshop we will discover the expertise and assets in the room, dream up possibilities, design collaborations, and move towards delivering on our shared potential.

Register for "What If The Stories of The Social Value Marketplace Were Told Better and More Broadly?"

Register for the entire 3-part series


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