In the summer of 2012, the Government of Alberta launched a public consultation on the creation of a new social policy framework for the province.
Thrive, Calgary’s CED Network, prepared a submission recommending that a provincial Social Policy Framework adopt a CED lens, utilizing the economy and marketplace in innovative ways to improve social conditions.
Community Economic Development (CED) utilizes the economy and marketplace in innovative ways to improve social conditions. It assists businesses to grow and residents to improve their income . CED appeals to Alberta’s entrepreneurial spirit and builds the social, economic, environmental and cultural well-being of communities.
CED is about people. Take Mark for example, he says that he was not expected to graduate high school, let alone start his own business. Born with Cerebral Palsy, Mark has been in a wheelchair since he was a child. However, Mark enrolled in the ABCs of Small Business program at the CED organization Momentum, where he says he was given the tools he needed to draft, execute and expand his small business. Mark’s company, Handi Enterprises, supplies speech-recognition technology to businesses. He has since hired two employees.
CED strategies for social development have been adopted by communities, municipalities, as well as provincial and federal governments across Canada. Thrive recommends that a provincial Social Policy Framework adopt a CED lens.