March News
Le Salon 1861 Brings a New Kind of Faith to Little Burgundy
What do TedX McGill, an augmented reality project, a hackathon, and an event celebrating children’s efforts in the Little Burgundy community all have in common? They are part of the exciting programs happening at Le Salon 1861, a real estate project to renovate and repurpose Montreal’s St. Joseph’s Church. In 2015, the Foundation made a $160,000 Program Related Investment (PRI) to the project to transform the church into a coworking space fostering economic development, community integration, social inclusion and sustainability. 
With this issue of the newsletter, we are introducing a new feature: an in-depth story that will take a closer look at some of the Foundation’s work. Our first story is about Le Salon 1861.
The line-up last month at Le Salon 1861 included the filming of TedX McGill, the "Art x Business" discussion series, the Up Community Start-up Weekend, a St. Joseph's Church Augmented Reality Project, the ProtoHack hackathon, and an annual local event called Le Gala des Victoires de la Petite-Bourgogne, celebrating children’s efforts in the Little Burgundy community.
…add to that a local Muslim prayer group, a restaurant celebrating local food, a morning rave, a zumba event and freelancers co-working in the Co-creation Lab…
Le Salon 1861 has transformed a lot since the BCorp real estate company Quo Vadis took it over from the Sulpicians. It is no longer a crumbling unattended church, but a bustling community hub, where unlikely bedfellows are part of an advisory board, where Muslim prayer groups, community sports organizations, academic institutions and new tech entrepreneurs all sit around the same table.
Quo Vadis’ president, Natalie Voland, wouldn’t have it any other way.
“The overwhelming feeling of awe you get when you walk in today is the same feeling I had when I first saw it four years ago," says Natalie Voland, whose development company helped transform the building. "It's my company’s smallest physical space, but it's got my heart. I remember when I walked in, I said (inappropriately) 'Oh my God! How can we save this church?' "
Read the rest of the article (10 min. read)
WellAhead implementing everyday practices for wellbeing
The Foundation’s WellAhead initiative is prototyping six everyday practices to improve the social and emotional wellbeing of children in British Columbia over the coming months. The practices — "Be" in Nature, 2x10 Check-ins, Circle, Take a Pause, Personalized Greetings and Transition Time — were co-designed by multiple stakeholders in the pilot districts based on their individual contexts and priorities. The goal of this prototyping phase is to learn if these practices have a positive impact and to find out what it would take to ensure they become part of the ongoing culture of school communities.
Learn more
Montreal neighbourhoods selected for Centraide Collective Impact Project
Centraide of Greater Montreal has chosen 17 Montreal neighbourhoods — two more than originally planned —  to participate in its first Collective Impact Project (CIP). The CIP will provide tailored support based on the needs of each neighbourhood and will help them experiment, innovate and find new ways to accelerate change. Funded by major Montreal family foundations, including the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation, the CIP aims to increase the impact of collective action and achieve measurable and significant outcomes in the reduction of poverty in Montreal neighbourhoods.   
See the neighbourhoods
Canopy wants to help farming communities turn straw into gold
The market for paper made from straw is growing rapidly, says Foundation grantee Canopy. According to their research, there is a 1.3 million tonne opportunity for non-wood pulp and paper. To help meet this demand, Canopy has launched “Yes, in my backyard!— a search to find farming communities with the right conditions (straw availability, transport and labour) for new non-wood pulp mills.  
Learn more about this opportunity
Building a culture of health in the United States: Funding opportunity for Canadian health care charities
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is seeking international proposals for ideas to build a culture of health in the United States. Between $50,000 and $250,000 (USD) will be granted to projects, programs and models that promote health equity and have demonstrated impact, but that have not yet been widely tested or implemented in the U.S. They are particularly interested in funding ideas that build healthy places; develop social connection across the lifespan; get and keep children healthy; integrate health and social services; and increase the health care system’s focus on the root causes of poor health. Application deadline: May 31, 2016 (3 p.m. ET)
Apply here
Funding Opportunity: Community fund for Canada’s 150th
A new community fund to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary has been announced by the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, and Community Foundations of Canada. The fund will distribute small grants through community foundations to locally-led projects that build community, inspire a deeper understanding of Canada, and encourage participation in a wide range of initiatives that mark Canada’s 150th anniversary of Confederation.
Learn more and apply
Upcoming events at MaRS Discovery District
Check out a few of the exciting upcoming events at the MaRS Discovery District:
Jason Saul, CEO of Mission Measurement, talks about how The Impact Genome Project® is being use to create a comprehensive evidence base of “what works” in social change. This event is part of the MaRS Global Leaders series. The talks are designed to inspire, educate and engage Canadian leaders and thinkers by featuring globally recognized entrepreneurs, authors and decision-makers. Learn more and register
There’s never been a greater opportunity for young leaders to impact Canada’s innovation economy. Join the country’s most innovative employers, youth leadership organizations and top young talent for a summit that promises create the first national plan for engaging young leaders to strengthen Canada’s capacity to develop young leaders and innovators.
Indigenous Innovation Summit inspires new partnerships and projects

New partnerships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous organizations and the creation of an Indigenous Innovation Demonstration Fund are among the highlights of the Indigenous Innovation Summit Report 2015, released by the National Association of Friendship Centres. The report details the promising results of the inaugural Indigenous Innovation Summit — the first its kind national-level social innovation summit, created for and by Indigenous people. Did you miss the event in 2015? You can watch videos of the panels and workshops here.

The next Indigenous Innovation Summit will take place this fall in Edmonton, Alberta.

  Read the report.
Investing in smart energy could strengthen economies and the environment
Canadian communities have untapped opportunities to strengthen local economies, reduce current and future energy costs and emissions, and create jobs by investing in smarter and more integrated approaches to energy use at the local level, says a report newly released by Quest Canada’s Getting To Implementation initiative  and Sustainable Prosperity. The report, Community Energy Planning: The Value Proposition, also states that community energy planning has a positive effect on environmental and community health goals, as well as economic ones. Quest is a Foundation grantee.
Canadian corporations indirectly challenge US climate regulations: SHARE report

Many large American trade associations that have Canadian members are actively lobbying against regulations aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and are challenging Obama’s Clean Power Plan, says a new case study by the Shareholder Association for Research and Education (SHARE).  “Attacking the Clean Power Plan: How Canadian corporations are indirectly supporting action against US climate regulations,” provides examples of Canadian companies connected to US trade associations and studies the risks that can arise for investors linked to aggressive lobbying, especially as it relates to management and disclosure of political spending associated with climate action. Canadian institutional investors, working with SHARE, have been approaching Canadian and US companies to establish clearer guidelines and board oversight for trade association memberships.
Community News
Reminder: Cities Reducing Poverty summit
From April 5-7, follow Tamarack’s Vibrant Communities Canada initiative at the Cities Reducing Poverty: When Mayors Lead summit in Edmonton, Alberta. The summit will bring together Canadian mayors and community leaders to learn from each other and to coordinate efforts to reduce poverty throughout Canada. The Tamarack Institute is a Foundation grantee.
Here are some of our favourite blogs from the past month.
Introducing the Future of Food series
What will food in the future look like? Where are we going, where do we want to be going, and what can we do to change the course? We are handing the microphone over to twelve leading food thinkers in Canada to help answer these important questions. Check out the first in the series “Back to the future: rebalancing our food systems,” by Andrew Heintzman, co-founder and CEO of InvestEco Capital Corporation.
Innovating Innovation: Connecting technological, business and social innovation
Social innovation needs a reinvented collaborative mindset and approach to have impact, says SiG executive director, Tim Draimin. He makes the case for the need to integrate today’s tools and technologies with knowledge emerging from across all sectors on innovation, social behavior, social capital, collaboration and networks.  
Lessons from the Sandbox
In just nine years, the community of Hubballi, India has been transformed through exciting investments in education, innovation, and collaboration. Read what  RECODE program director Chad Lubelsky, and Jakob Wildman-Sisk, Social Lab Manager, UNB’s Pond-Deshpande Centre, learned about fostering the growth of entrepreneurship ecosystems from their trip to this thriving community.  
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visit the SiG Knowledge Hub.