February 2009

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In this issue:

Features and Headlines

Relevant News From Outside British Columbia


Funding and Contract Opportunities


Features and Headlines

FEATURE: Why I continue to invest in the Montreal Community Loan Association even though I live in Vancouver.

By Carol Madsen

For almost ten years the Grand Plateau of Montreal was my community. But even though I now work in Canada's poorest postal code, Vancouver's downtown eastside, the Montreal Community Loan Association (ACEM) continues to provide me with a role model of how social finance should be provided and how a social finance institution should be operationalized.

Last spring, while at the annual Canadian CED Network conference held in Saskatoon Saskatchewan, I ran into Anne Kettenbeil and the staff team from the Montreal Community Loan Association. They asked me to explain why I'm still invested in ACEM.

From 1990-1991 while on a volunteer student internship I worked with the Montreal Community Loan Association while it was incubating in the CDEC-Grand Plateau later known as the Centre d'Innovation Developpement Economique Local-Grand Plateau. In 1995-1997, after working in international development education for four years, I came back to the Grand Plateau community and worked with the Montreal Community Loan Association. By then, the ACEM had become its own independent charitable non-profit.

My role at that time was to design and develop community economic development triple bottom line entrepreneurship training courses with immigrant communities and to organize the first pan-Canadian Alternative Investment Strategies conference. We were a small team at the office, so along with these tasks, I was involved in meeting with investors, funders, lenders, technical assistance providers, community groups and linking with the US based National Association of Community Development Loan Funds.

Simultaneously, while working at the ACEM, I earned my Masters degree from Southern New Hampshire University's Community Economic Development program. My courses there reinforced my support for the ACEM model and I based my thesis on ACEM's work.

For me, what is important is the social return on investment that we were observing as we financed and supported single mothers, new immigrants, youth led businesses, and non-profit training businesses. I also observed that when these businesses started showing a profit, they in turn started to reinvest in us. For some, it was investing financially, for others it was supporting me in my CED entrepreneurship training courses as volunteer co-facilitators or as speakers at our conference.

Initially, I invested money in the loan fund, because I believed strongly that there were people in my community that had resources and people that had great community development and community economic development ideas but were facing systemic barriers to accessing capital. We needed to match the ideas with the money.

I believe that this unfortunately is still the case

Now, 12 years later, living on the opposite side of the country, I continue to invest with the ACEM, and it continues to nourish me with its success stories of changed lives.

Carol Madsen is the Program Manager of Tradeworks Training Society, lectures at SFU's Sustainable Community Development program and is on the Board of Directors of the Canadian Community Economic Development Network.


Remaking the Economy through People's Eyes: A Forum Exploring Economic Models for Today and Tomorrow

March 7th 9:00am - 4:30pm
University of Victoria, MacLaurin Building


Dr. James Tully
The Big Picture: The Politics of An Economy

Dr. Mark Roseland
Community Capital: A Sustainable Approach to Community Development

Dr. Helen Haugh
There Is Another way: The Social Economy

Mr. Doug Wright
Another Way of Doing Things: The Co-operative Model

Select Workshops

  • Capital Pools for Community-Based Ventures - an opportunity to rebuild BC's local economies?
  • Creating a Supportive Environment for Social Enterprise in BC
  • An Indigenous Critique of Aboriginal Economic Development
  • Community Economic Development - Principles and Practice to Re-localize Economies

This event is free and open to all members of the public and university community, however, you must register online.

Made possible with support from the Uvic Faculty of Business, Coast Capital Savings, Central #1 Credit Union, The Co-operators, and Federated Co-ops.










June 3-5, 2009
University of Winnipeg
Winnipeg, Mantioba

*Registration opens end of February!*

Join us - at the centre of North America, in the heart of the continent - for three days of learning, networking and celebration at the premier community economic development (CED) event in Canada!

The theme of this year's conference is Full Circle: Sharing a Vision for the 7th Generation. Our inspiriation is an original law kept and maintained by generations of Aboriginal people: just as our actions will affect generations to come, we are living in a world that was shaped by those before us. Aboriginal elders remind us to think and decide in a way that is conscious of the seven generations of people that will be born in the future - ensuring that we respect our Mother Earth and her spirited beings.

Hosted at the University of Winnipeg, this year's conference includes over 45 learning and information sharing sessions, as well as exciting site visits and networking opportunities. All plenary sessions and keynote addresses, as well as numerous workshops in each time slot, will have simultaneous translation into French and English

The 2009 National CED Conference is organized by the Canadian CED Network in partnership with SEED Winnipeg and Ka Ni Kanichihk.

For more information click here>>


BC Social Enterprise Summit

Creating a Supportive Environment for Social Enterprise in British Columbia: A working framework and action plan for moving forward

The BC Social Enterprise Summit (BCSES) was held November 17 to 19, 2008 in Vancouver. The objective of the Summit was to work towards a specific plan of activities, roles, and responsibilities that will help us create a strong and healthy environment for social enterprise in British Columbia.

As a result of summit discussions a working framework including four integrated components for creating a supportive environment for social enterprise, was adopted.

1. Encourage Awareness and Demonstrate the Value of Social Enterprise

2. Enhance Enterprise Skills

3. Ensure Access to Capital and Investment

4. Expand Market Opportunities

View the complete framework and action plan at www.enterprisingnonprofits.ca/summit

Time for a Poverty Reduction Plan for British Columbia

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

On February 5, 2009, more than 200 organizations and community leaders joined together to call on all BC political parties to commit to a comprehensive, legislated poverty reduction plan. You can read the full open letter, list of signatories and news release at bcpovertyreduction.ca.

This groundswell of concern about BC's unacceptably high levels of poverty and homelessness comes from many different communities in BC. It comes from all regions of the province, and from faith leaders, health organizations, doctors, businesses, First Nations and Aboriginal groups, labour unions, immigrant and refugee organizations, community service agencies, municipal councils, women's groups, and many more.

We all agree that the time is now for a legislated poverty reduction plan. And we hope you'll join the call>>


The Wellesely Institute Responds to the Federal Budget 2009

Federal budget 2009 adds big dollars to federal spending, but fails to target those investments at the Canadians who are suffering the most in the current economic recession, according to the Wellesley Institute, an independent research and policy institute.

"The federal government deserves credit for boosting spending to meet Canada's economic, health and social challenges," says Rick Blickstead, CEO of the Wellesley Institute. "But it's not just big spending that counts, its smart spending. A bit here and something there doesn't add up to an effective and comprehensive plan to build a strong, healthy and equitable economy." The federal budget fails to meet a number of economic, social and health priorities:

  • For the three million households precariously housed, today's federal budget delivers $2 billion. This is far less than the $5 billion-plus being offered to wealthier Canadians who already own homes and cottages and want to build a new deck or pave their driveway.
  • Wellesley Institute research shows that every $1,000 increase in household income for the lowest-income Canadians delivers substantial health benefits. Today's federal budget fails to put real dollars in the pockets of the poorest Canadians. Adding benefits for people already receiving Employment Insurance doesn't help the six out of ten unemployed who can't even get an EI cheque because of overly strict regulations.
  • The third sector - non-profit, charitable and voluntary organizations - is a big part of the Canadian economy, generating tens of billions of dollars in economic activity. For years, the government has taken the third sector for granted, and today's budget continues that pattern of neglect. Third sector groups are on the frontlines in providing practical support to the victims of the economic crisis, but they won't get any help from the 2009 budget.
  • Canadians place a high value on our national health care system, and we need to continue to fund innovative and cost-effective health solutions like an expanded national network of community health centres. Today's budget delivers nothing to expand our health care system.
  • Transit and other municipal infrastructure spending would provide powerful economic stimulus, and strengthen communities, but federal budget 2009 falls far short of the needs set out by municipalities. And the new program rules and cost-sharing requirements will further restrict any benefit. Asking cash-strapped municipalities to go further into debt to access federal dollars won't help renew local social and physical infrastructure.

The Wellesley Institute will publish a more detailed budget analysis, including a detailed look at housing and the federal budget, on its web site at www.wellesleyinstitute.com


Relevant News Outside of British Columbia

New Employment Models Mixing Flexibility with Security Needed to Tackle Labour Force Ills in IT Sector and Beyond

Canadian Policy Research Networks

February 5, 2009
Governments are being challenged to reconcile two key pressures: the demand for flexibility in the functioning of labour markets and the organization of work, and the simultaneous demand for income security among citizens, especially those vulnerable to unemployment and under-employment. Critical to meeting this challenge is support to employment transitions. An ageing population, rapid technological change, economic volatility and the increasing need for multiple job transitions, lifelong learning and extensions to working lives underlie this challenge.

In their report, "Flexibility/Security Policies and the Labour Market Trajectories of IT Workers," Martin Cooke, University of Waterloo, and Kerry Platman, University of Warwick, Centre for Employment Research, use case study data collected in Canada and the United Kingdom from employees of small- and mid-sized information technology firms to assess their capacity to respond to rapid technological changes as well as changing economic and market conditions.

The authors looked at the careers of IT professionals aged 40 and over to identify the factors and resources that contributed to their successful work transitions, such as finding or keeping a job, setting up a new venture or accessing skills to remain employed. They concluded that public policies that offer added resources to individuals as they navigate the uncertainties of employment are critical. These include: supporting workers to exert control over the timing of an employment transition; permitting professional organizations, government agencies and sector-specific bodies to play a greater role in providing local labour market information to guide individuals towards promising employment; and, exploring the potential role of specialist brokers or representatives who can exploit existing sector-specific labour market intelligence for the benefit of timely worker transitions.

To read or download Flexibility/Security Policies and the Labour Market Trajectories of IT Workers, click here>>


Report urges 'creativity-oriented economy' for Ontario

Submitted by Ron Faris Ph.D., President, Golden Horizon Ventures

February 4, 2009
Ontario's economic future largely depends on massive investments in early childhood education, a sharp increase in post-secondary school graduates and wage subsidies for experienced workers forced into low paying jobs, says a report to Premier Dalton McGuinty.

The recommendations, contained in a $2.2 million report released February 5, are described as key to propelling Ontario towards a "creativity-oriented" economy while helping those left behind.

The report, commissioned by the premier last spring, doesn't place a price tag on its recommendations. But it clearly would be huge.

One study estimated that implementing a wage subsidy program in the U.S. would cost between $1.6 billion and $7 billion, depending on the criteria chosen.

Click here to download the complete document>>



SFU Certificate for Community Economic Development Professionals

For more information visit: www.sfu.ca/cscd/ced

Upcoming Courses: Spring 2009


CED Approaches to Affordable Housing, April 24-25


Financing CED Projects, March 27-28

Sustainable Development and CED, May 29-30

*New* Register online - click here>>

What students have to say about the program...

Honestly, I think it is some of the most practical education I have ever received. Patricia Morgan, Dawson Creek

The whole program has really been a huge benefit to me. It has helped develop my skills and increased my understanding of the issues relating to CED. I like the format, having two days and then an assignment; the assignments have been valuable and applicable.... Good good good.Kevin Koopmans, Community Futures South Fraser


Impact! The Co-operators Youth Conference for Sustainability Leadership


Achieving sustainability requires a multi-disciplinary approach and a broad social commitment. It also requires the energy and passion of youth. That's why The Co-operators has launched an unprecedented partnership of business, academia and non-government organisations to bring together students from all fields of study from across Canada to develop and implement real sustainability solutions for their current lives and future careers.

All conference related expenses will be covered for selected participants. Your contribution is time and commitment.

  • September 24-27th, 2009 at the University of Guelph in Guelph, Ontario
  • 180 university & college students from across Canada
  • Explore tangible multi-industry and sector sustainability solutions with national business and academic leaders
  • Build networks and develop skills to lead sustainability initiatives long after the conference
  • Network and learn from students like you who are excited, empowered & equipped for change

Share this message or URL with your network, especially with students. To learn more visit www.impactyouthsustainability.ca or email impact@cooperators.ca.

Conference partners: The Co-operators, Research Network for Business Sustainability, David Suzuki Foundation, The Natural Step, the University of Guelph, Wilfrid Laurier University, AIESEC, Coopsco, the University of Saskatchewan's Centre for the Study of Co-operatives and the Richard Ivey School of Business.


Other Events

March and April 2009
Enterprising Non-Profits orientation sessions
Various locations in BC

April 28 - 30, 2009
The Cleantech Forum XXII - Accelerating the next wave of innovation
Copenhagen, Denmark

March 1 - 3, 2009
The 2009 Community Development Finance Institute
Washington, DC

SAVE THE DATE! March 7, 2009
Remaking the Economy
Co-organized by the BC Institute for Co-operative Studies and the BC CED Network.

March 8 - 12, 2009
Aboriginal Policy Research Conference

March 19 - 22, 2009
Forum on the Solidarity Economy: Building Another World
University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA

March 20 -- 21, 2009
Transition Towns Conference
A two-day workshop delivered by two North American instructors trained by the founders of Transition in the UK. The session will provide you with the knowledge, tools, and skills to move your community to Transition thinking. And doing!
$240, limited seating
Email stacey@centreforsocialenterprise.com for more information

March 24 - 26, 2009
BC Rural Communities Sustainability Forum
Revelstoke BC

March 28 - 29, 2009
Green Festival: Sustainable Economy, Ecological Balance and Social Justice
Seattle, WA

May 19-22, 2009
Canadian Social Forum
Calgary, AB

June 3-5, 2009
2009 National CED Conference, Winnipeg, MB
Click here>>

September 18-23, 2009
Economic Development Association of Canada and Economic Development Association of BC 2009 Conference, Vancouver
Click here>>

October 15-17, 2009
Ecological Economics: Prosperity for a Sustainable Society
- Canadian Society for Ecological Economics (CANSEE) 8th Biennial Conference, Vancouver

November 1 - 3, 2009
The International Ecotourism and Sustainable Tourism Conference
Portland, Oregon


Funding & Contract Opportunities

Remote Community Clean Energy Program - If you're community is off the grid, here's a $20 million BC government program to stay off with support for sustainable community energy solutions.
Click here>>

Sustainable Community Plans 2008 - $$ for municipal governments to develop sustainable community economic development strategies.
Click here>>

Video competition for the Canadian Social Forum - Winners will receive $500 cash prize, travel and accommodations to the Canadian Social Forum, and an internship.
Deadline: Monday March 2, 2009
Click here>>

Federal Mountain Pine Beetle Program - First Nations Forestry Council
Deadline: Open
Click here>>

Green Municipal Fund Feasibility Studies and Field Tests
Deadline: Open
Click here>>

Public Awareness Grants Awareness Grants - Supports communities with grants of up to $4,000 to assist with physical activity campaigns focused on increasing physical activity among less-active adults by raising awareness of the benefits of and opportunities for physical activity.
Deadline: February 27, 2009
Click here>>

Summer Career Placement Program - This program provides wage support to employers to hire returning students in career-oriented employment.
Deadline: February 27, 2009
Click here>>

EnviroPOD Grants Available - Provides capacity building grants to not-for-profit societies or co-operative associations.
Deadline: February 27, 2009
Click here>>



BC Recreation and Parks Association
Communications Manager
Deadline: March 2, 2009
Click here>>

Canada World Youth / Jeunesse Canada Monde
Deadline: February 27, 2009
Click here>>

Tides Canada
Vice President, Business Development & Operations
Click here>>


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