Launch of Cities for People website

Cities for People, a new Foundation initiative has recently launched their website. It aims to explore the question: How can we enhance social, ecological and economic well-being and help civic cultures thrive?

Cities For People sees every city as an invitation. An invitation for interaction, innovation, change, inclusion, learning, love and growth. An invitation to think beyond the way things are and have always been, and come up with new ways to make where we live, support how we would like to live.

The goal is to empower change and help foster the sort of multi-level transformation and ideological shift that is required to help cities embrace the needs of their populations and come up with ways to meet them.

Visit the website here.

Social Innovation Learning Session

The Foundation has launched its Social Innovation Learning Program, a series of retreat-style gatherings designed to support the continued development of organizations through the formation of a peer-supported learning community. From 2004-2007, the Foundation regularly convened selected grantees to share strategies, experiences and challenges, draw inspiration from one another, and to learn from invited experts. This format has recently been revived with a group of 8 grantees.

The first in a series of three gatherings was held in late February, at the Hotel Premières Nations in Wendake (Quebec), where participants discovered links between diverse areas of work and learned about common strategies for scaling their efforts. As we have heard from grantees in the past, taking a pause can be rejuvenating, and this event proved to be beneficial in terms of stepping back from the day-to-day operational demands to focus on collaborative learning.

Truth and Reconciliation Commission

The Foundation has been invited to speak at the upcoming Truth and Reconciliation Commission Alberta National Event in Edmonton, March 27-30.

Stephen Huddart, President and CEO and Erin Montour, Junior Program Officer, will present an ‘Expression of Reconciliation’. Such remarks reflect the efforts that Canadians are making to overcome past injustices, and become part of the official record of the Commission.

The Boldness Project, a partnership between the Foundation and the Government of Manitoba which focuses on early child development in North Winnipeg, will also speak to the Commission.

MaRS Launches a New Initiative and Hosts Impact Ontario

The MaRS Centre for Impact Investing is pleased to announce the launch of their newest initiative: Community Finance Solutions. It provides expert advisory support to high-potential initiatives creating new impact investing funds and innovative financial products. Click here for more information.

MaRs is also hosting Impact Ontario on March 18th, a landmark conference that brings Ontario ventures together with investors and intermediaries. Click here for more details.

The Re-Emerging Art of Funding Innovation

The Foundation is mentioned in the cover article of the current (Spring 2014) issue of the Stanford Social Innovation Review. The article, Re-Emerging Art of Funding Innovation, describes the work of a group of 11 funders, and mentions the Foundation’s support for Social Innovation Generation and Innoweave.

Click here to read the article.

Upcoming Webinar on Partnering with Indigenous Communities

The Foundation and The Circle on Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada invite you to tune in on February 26th, 2014 from 12:00-1:00pm (EST) for a webinar entitled “Leading Together – Partnerships between Indigenous peoples and the voluntary/philanthropic sector“.

This webinar will discuss promising approaches to partnership development, and provide insight into why meaningful partnerships are important to community and philanthropic work with Indigenous communities. Speakers include Jessica Bolduc, National Youth Representative at the Congress of Aboriginal Peoples; Nadia Duguay, Co-Founder of Exeko; Wanda Brascoupe Peters, Executive Director of The Circle on Philanthropy and Aboriginal Peoples in Canada; and Stephen Huddart, the Foundation’s President & CEO. Presentations will be followed by an interactive question and discussion period, moderated by Erin Montour.
For more information click here.

Cross-Canada Tour
 with April Rinne of Collaborative Lab on “The Sharing Economy”

April Rinne, Chief Strategy Officer of Collaborative Lab, will be touring Canada for a series of presentations on how the collaborative or “sharing economy” has the potential to transform the way we design products and services, create sustainable and “shareable cities”, re-imagine public services, reduce waste and connect communities.

The Sharing Economy Tour is part of the launch of Cities for People, a collaborative experiment initiated by the Foundation that brings multiple stakeholders together to take action in creating resilient and livable communities. The tour is co-sponsored by Social Innovation Generation (SiG) with local partners in Montreal, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver.

Collaborative Consumption and The Sharing Economy: Opportunities for Cities, Organizations, and Well-Being will be presented on the following dates:

Montreal: Monday, February 10th, 11am-12:00pm, Concordia University, David O’Brien Centre for Sustainable Enterprise

Toronto: Tuesday, February 11th, 5:30pm-7:00pm, MaRS Centre

Vancouver: Thursday, February 13th, 5:20pm-7:30pm, The HiVE

Click here for more information.

Moving forward in partnership with Indigenous youth

The Globe and Mail recently published an op-ed written by Erin Montour and Stephen Huddart of the Foundation. This editorial argues that Indigenous youth are poised to change their future, and that community organizations must establish meaningful relationships with them to help make that happen. The piece, entitled “Indigenous Partners Not Prisoners,” provides examples from the Foundation’s recent publication, Leading Together: Indigenous Youth in Community Partnership. Click here to read the full article.

New Publication: Good Sport

The Foundation’s Sport for Development initiative drew upon sport’s ability to shape both individual character and communities at large. Over the years, this initiative supported hundreds of community-based sport projects; influenced the development of provincial and national sport policy; and promoted the skills development of community sport leaders. It is currently winding down.

Good Sport was written by award-winning author Silver Donald Cameron, and includes a foreword by Governor-General David Johnston. It is a compilation of stories that reflect the diversity of projects that took place in the Sport for Development initiative, from the participants’ perspectives. Download the publication here.

Support for Early Childhood Development

The Foundation and the Government of Manitoba are working together to establish a million-dollar Early Childhood Development Innovation Fund, the first of its kind in Canada.

In a partnership with United Way of Winnipeg, the Winnipeg Poverty Reduction Council and the business community, the fund is being seeded by a $500,000 investment from the Foundation, with matching funds from the Government of Manitoba. Click here to read more.