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Year 3 of the Manitoba Social Enterprise Strategy Begins

And we’re off! We’re happy to announce that we have finalized the agreement for Year 3 of the Manitoba Social Enterprise Strategy. This co-developed and co-implemented project is a partnership between the Canadian CED Network Manitoba and the Government of Manitoba to support the development of a strong social enterprise sector employing and training individuals facing barriers to employment.

See this report for a summary of the activities undertaken in the previous two years.

Social enterprise practitioners and stakeholders can look forward to this year’s activities:

  • Social Enterprise Intensive Workshop — January 23 to 26, 2018: This four-day workshop will provide tools to better help non-profits, existing social enterprises and coaches/consultants reach their goals. It will focus on strategic steps towards a solid and practical plan that will support social enterprises at any stage of development – opportunity identification, launch, stabilization or expansion! Contact Frank Atnikov for more details!
  • Buy Social Prairies: Social enterprises need markets! We are continuing to support a social purchasing intermediary to work with social enterprises to access public and private procurement opportunities. This year we’re going to build for the future by partnering with LITE and the Social Purchasing Portal to develop Buy Social Prairies. Buy Social Canada is a national social enterprise network, providing certification, training and advocacy to develop strong social enterprise markets. Buy Social Prairies will be the local affiliate. Contact Darcy to engage with the purchasing intermediary!
  • Mentorship and Industry Expertise: The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce, Spark and Social Enterprise Manitoba are piloting a mentorship program to connect social enterprise practitioners with industry experts from the private sector. This will help social enterprise leaders succeed in their industry, thereby providing more opportunities to hire and train individuals facing barriers.
  • Network Building: We will continue to bring together Manitoba Work Integration Social Enterprises to network, learn and collaborate together. Events and bi-monthly meetings will continue. Reach out to Darcy if you want to be connected!
  • Post Secondary Connections: University College of the North, Red River College and the University of Winnipeg have all been engaged with the MSES. From program development to workshops, we’ll continue to work with these institutions to increase the skills and knowledge of our future social enterprise leaders.
  • Researching the sector: How many social enterprises are in Manitoba? How many people do they employ? How do they do it? For the duration of the MSES we have been asking these questions to social enterprises that we may get a better understanding of the makeup and nature of social enterprises in Manitoba, and then better provide supports.
  • Connecting with Indigenous Leadership: The effects of Canada’s colonial legacy are quite clear in Manitoba. Working in partnership with Indigenous leadership is a key priority of the MSES. We are engaged with the Winnipeg Indigenous Executives Circle to build bridges and learn between communities.
  • Building Evaluation Capacity: Evaluation is tricky and can seem daunting, but it can be very powerful for making organizational improvements and demonstrating value to stakeholders. This year Social Enterprise Manitoba will host an evaluation working group, bringing practitioners together with evaluation experts to learn and develop together. Contact Darcy for details.
  • Social Finance: Access to the right money at the right time is essential for social enterprises. The MSES will continue to support the Winnipeg Social Finance Working Group, bringing together social finance stakeholders to identify challenges and solutions for social enterprises accessing financing. This group includes Aboriginal Council of Winnipeg, Assiniboine Credit Union, Canadian CED Network Manitoba, Jubilee Fund, SEED Winnipeg, United Way Winnipeg, University of Winnipeg Community Renewal Corporation and Winnipeg Foundation.