Thursday, November 23, 2006

VanCity Award Announced

Earlier we mentioned the VanCity Award.

Well, today's the day. The VanCity Award has been announced.

And the award goes to ...

Well, before that ... a note of congratulations to the VanCity members. The VanCity Award is selected on the basis of the VanCity membership voting to support a shortlist of candidate organisations. By way of reminder the shortlisted organisations were:

  • AIDS Vancouver Island and Cool Aid Society

  • Atira Women’s Resource Society

  • Crisis Centre

  • Quest Outreach Society

  • Given VanCity is a cooperative, that's a solid illustration of returning value back to the community.

    So .. about that winner ...

    Quest Outreach Society was selected.

    You can read the VanCity press release, BC’s only food exchange program gets $1-million grant from credit union, for yourself. But here's a snippet:
      A program that rescues high-quality food, keeping it out of landfills and redistributing it to non-profit agencies that feed hungry people across the Lower Mainland, has won a $1-million award from Vancity.

      This year's $1-million Vancity Award goes to Quest Outreach Society for the expansion of BC's only food exchange program.

      Last year, Quest Food Exchange diverted 6.6 million pounds of surplus high-quality food from Lower Mainland landfills, which added up to $7 million worth of food. Each day the organization fills, then empties, its Vancouver warehouse providing food to more than a hundred social service agencies feeding more than 45,000 people a month.

      With the help of the Vancity Award, Quest will purchase a warehouse that will enable them to triple their capacity over two years. A larger space will mean the potential to rescue nearly 20 million pounds of high-quality food each year and redistribute it to nearly 150,000 people in the Lower Mainland each month.

      "Quest would like to thank Vancity and its members for voting for us," says Shelley Wells, executive director of Quest. "As a result of campaigning, we have gained new food suppliers, new social service agency partners, new volunteers and now the funding for a new facility. With these new partnerships and the continued support of our donors, we can more strongly address the Lower Mainland's food distribution problem and connect high-quality, healthy food with those who need it most."

      The $1-million Vancity Award, the largest corporate gift of its kind in Canada, was established in 2001 by Vancity's Board of Directors to support the social, environmental and economic well-being of the community by funding a project that would make a major, long-lasting impact on people's lives.


      "These were all great projects and it would have been our privilege to support any of them, but in the end it was our members who decided the project that most resonated with them," says Elain Duvall, chair of Vancity's Board of Directors. "Quest's Food Exchange program fits both Vancity's environmental and social objectives. We think the idea of keeping good food out of landfills and into hungry bellies is inspirational."


      Quest partners with non-profit organizations in Lower Mainland communities, including Vancouver; Burnaby; New Westminster, North Vancouver, Richmond, Surrey, Tri-Cities and Maple Ridge.

    Before I forget ... VanCity is accepting applications for next year, until December 23, 2006.

    Here's how the CBC covered the award.
    --------------------- Tags for information about: for:vsef, VanCity, Nonprofit


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    Friday, November 17, 2006

    Fast Company | 2007 Social Capitalists Announced

    The December/January issue of Fast Company, in co-ordination with The Monitor Group, carries the latest iteration of their Social Capitalist Awards.

    Although still US-centric, the awards are great recognition of innovation within the sphere of social enterprise.

    Here's a link to a chart that summarises the scope of the organisations selected. Take the time to read the "winner's statements".

    It's always good to see friends being recognised for their work. Each enterprise is outstanding, but here are a few that have us "thralled" ...

  • New Community Corp. - see NCC statement.

  • Nonprofit Finance Fund - see NFF statement.

  • Pioneer Human Services - see PHS Statement.

  • Rubicon Programs Inc. - see RP statement.

  • WITNESS - see WITNESS statement.

  • There's plenty of information on the Fast Company/Monitor Group methodology ... if you're interested.

    --------------------- Tags for information about: for:vsef, Social Capitalist, Social Enterprise, Fast Company


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    Thursday, November 16, 2006

    Social Enterprise Day - November 16th

    Although it's not a celebration opportunity in Canada ... we thought we'd adopt it from the UK.

    Join us in celebrating social enterpreneurs, everywhere.

    In our work to advance social enterprise, this sort of thing keep us looking to the future ... imagine a dedicated position in the federal cabinet to the needs of the "Third Sector".
    --------------------- Tags for information about: for:vsef, Social Enterprise, Nonprofit, Civil Society


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    Wednesday, November 15, 2006

    2006 Global MicroCredit Conference

    Today, on the other side of this country, the 2006 Global MicroCredit Conference will draw to an end. Paired with the Yunus Nobel Award, it's been a good month for our MicroFinance friends.

    If you're interested, the conference call for papers garnered an educational array of position statements. Take a look.

    Some of the papers that stand out are:

  • Taking Stock of the MCS- 1997-2006; 2007-2015 - Susan Davis & Vinod Khosla

  • A Billion to Gain - ING Bank

  • Just the facts maam-Gender Stories from Unexpected Sources with Morals for Microfinance - Susy Cheston

  • Compounding Community Capital-Canada’s Credit Unions and the Untapped Assets of Poor Communities - Brett Matthews

  • Community Investing in Canada - Susannah Cameron

  • Corporate-MFI Partnerships that are Profitable for the Corporation, the MFI, and the Clients - Graham Macmillan

  • The Future of Microfinance - Elizabeth Rhyne & Maria Otero

  • Earlier I mentioned Connie Bruck's article Millions For Millions, and I'm confident the piece was referenced at the conference.

    The "schism" between those who view MicroCredit as a philanthropic endeavour, allowing millions to lift themselves out of poverty, and those who see it as a tool to expand the benefits of the capital market is instructional.
    --------------------- Tags for information about: for:vsef, Social Economy, MicroCredit, MicroFinance


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