Invitation to Endorse Recommendations for Improving the Investment Readiness Program

May 13, 2021

Scrabble letters spelling READYThe recent federal budget renewed the Investment Readiness Program (IRP) for a second 2-year, $50 million term. 

How can we ensure that this second phase of the IRP is effective in meeting its goals?  How can we ensure that the issues identified during the pilot phase of the IRP are addressed?

Members of the People-Centred Economy Group have made the following recommendations to the federal government with respect to the design and implementation of IRP 2.0:

  1. Prioritize and strengthen the role of groups led by and serving equity-seeking populations, so that their needs are reflected throughout the program, and that they receive ample financial resources.
  2. Working with IRP pilot partners and data from the IRP pilot, and engaging with additional ecosystem stakeholders, consider a redesign of the SPO funding delivery mechanism that takes into account: sequencing for more relationship-oriented program development and intake processes; tailored funds or processes for different stages of readiness; and responsive intake systems that enable support when groups need it in advance of real procurement or investment opportunity. Working with ecosystem partners, consider new or additional delivery partners with a focus on strengthening equity, regionality, and subsidiarity, while taking into account the unique role of national ecosystem partners.
  3. Expand and clarify the IRP objectives to include procurement readiness and development of the wider social innovation ecosystem, beyond those initiatives likely to be recipients of social financing.
  4. Consider a distinct role for IRP partnership convening that could be combined with wider ecosystem convening and likely separate from the funding delivery partners. There may also be value in integrating a distinct ‘wayfinder’ role that would focus on helping non-IRP partners navigate the program. Regardless of the specifics, all partners focused on convening should demonstrate strong collaborative capacity, equity and inclusion practices, and expect to be key resources for the forthcoming Social Innovation Advisory Council.

Do you agree with these recommendations?  If yes, we invite you to endorse the briefing note submitted to the federal government on May 7.  You can signal your organization’s support by sending an email to CCEDNet’s Government Relations Director, Raissa Marks, at . New endorsements will be communicated to government officials as they come in.

Endorsements to date:

  • Buy Social Canada (BSC)
  • Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNet)
  • Canadian Worker Co-op Federation (CWCF)
  • Chantier de l’économie sociale
  • Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada (CMC)
  • Imagine Canada
  • Institute for Community Prosperity
  • Momentum Calgary
  • Network for the Advancement of Black Communities
  • Ontario Nonprofit Network (ONN)
  • PARO Centre for Women’s Enterprise
  • SEED Winnipeg
  • Social Economy Through Social Inclusion (SETSI)
  • Social Enterprise Council of Canada (SECC)
  • Table of Impact Investment Practitioners (TIIP)
  • Women’s Economic Council (WEC)