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Inspiring growth and impact

Backpacker looking up at trees while on a hike in the forest. Photo by Oziel Gomez via Pexels.

A Spotlight on Agent of Change Devesh Tilokani

Today’s youth are the leaders of tomorrow. They’re filled with passion, drive, and aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty to create a more sustainable, prosperous, and equitable world for all.

We’re profiling five participants from Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals — an 8-week, impact-driven course that taught 100 youth how to use the tools and tactics of social entrepreneurship to work towards the achievement of the SDGs. Devesh’s work touches on a number of Sustainable Development Goals, namely SDG 3: Good Health & Well-being and SDG 4: Quality Education.

Devesh Tilokani, Founder of Progressholic

The Devesh Tilokani you see today is outgoing, friendly, and well-spoken.

He has come a long way in the past five years. In high school, he struggled with social anxiety and self-image, sending him into a spiral of depression.

“The way things were going, [I felt like] whether I was 16 or 60, I might as well not be around,” he explained. “When those sorts of thoughts come into your head, you realize you’ve hit rock bottom. And there was only one way for me: up.”

For Devesh, that meant challenging himself to speak to new people constantly. There’s no harm in trying something out, he thought. If worse comes to worst, I’ll just fail.

Soon enough, saying “hello” to new people became a habit. Devesh’s fear evolved into excitement and genuine curiosity.

“You come across a wide range of people, so you come across a range of responses: some good, some bad,” he explained. “It’s kind of a move into the unknown, which is uncomfortable, but can be really rewarding.”

In 2019, Devesh blended his new love for people with his longtime passion for personal growth into the first iteration of Progressholic: a self-development podcast.

When he joined CSI’s Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals program in 2020, Devesh learned about Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle. It’s a tool for identifying your “why” — and how you can achieve it.

“I looked back on my own life. My ‘why’ is to constantly develop myself while reducing human suffering. How can I align Progressholic to that personal vision?”

Reducing human suffering, to Devesh, meant creating a balance of the internal — the self — and the external — society. So during the course of the Agents of Change program, he began to experiment and launch this new iteration of the podcast: one focused on progress of self and society.

Progressholic: dedicated to the progress of self and society

The timing was perfect. As COVID-19 threw our world into chaos, individuals and groups alike developed community responses. Progressholic offered a platform for these folks to share what they’re doing and garner support.

As he was planning for upcoming episodes, Devesh ended up in a breakout room with one of the other Agents of Change participants, Kathy Huang. He told her about his vision, and she ended up connecting him to two or three different COVID-19 response initiatives — who ended up on the podcast!

Devesh described this pivot as existential flexibility: the ability of a leader to initiate a disruption in business strategy to advance a just cause.

“Right now, COVID-19 is happening. [If we bring] on similar guests to speak about a topic that I’m sure would be great, but wouldn’t be relevant to the times we’re in right now, are we really advancing the cause?”

Over the summer, Progressholic highlighted the work of organizations like the neighbourgood and the Caring and Connecting Pen Pal Initiative. The episode with The Home Front doubled as a fundraiser:

“We decided to donate $1 for each listen, and we wanted to hit 100 plays [in 5 days]. We’d never hit 100 plays before, so there was always that doubt, whether we’d be able to hit it or not, but we hit it just two hours before the deadline, and we were able to donate the money. I know it’s a small amount, but more than that, it was raising awareness for an incredible Canadian initiative.”

Since then, Devesh has continued to bring on guests that inspire growth and encourage taking action for impact. If you want to hear tips for self-development and stories about the leaders working hard to change our world, check out Progressholic, streaming anywhere you listen to podcasts.

Our Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals program is designed to equip the next generation of changemakers with the skills, resources, and coaching they need to make an impact. Check out other stories from program participants here!

Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals is made possible with the support of the Government of Canada

Creating opportunities for youth in Regent Park

Man in white shirt tending to outdoor vegetable garden. Photo by Priscilla du Preez via Unsplash.

A spotlight on Agent of Change Nayeon Kim

Today’s youth are the leaders of tomorrow. They’re filled with passion, drive, and aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty to create a more sustainable, prosperous, and equitable world for all.

We’re profiling five participants from Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals — an 8-week, impact-driven course that taught 100 youth how to use the tools and tactics of social entrepreneurship to work towards the achievement of the SDGs. Nayeon’s work touches on a number of Sustainable Development Goals, namely SDG 1: No Poverty, SDG 8: Decent Work & Economic Growth, and SDG 10: Reduced Inequalities.

Nayeon Kim’s voice is measured as she describes the systems that have caused (and perpetuate) poverty, how it has affected our neighbourhoods, and the gaps that need to be closed to truly address this issue. She speaks with confidence and clarity, her wit and determination to make a difference shining through.

Three years ago, Nayeon moved to Regent Park and became more and more involved in the community. The youth in the neighbourhood have always been top-of-mind for her, and she saw a gap in the work happening as part of the Regent Park Revitalization Plan: “While this billion-dollar revitalization has been going on, we haven’t been able to see a lot of jobs coming out, lives changed.”

An idea began to take root in her mind when she identified gaps that could turn into a sustainable economic opportunity in her neighbourhood: youth are struggling to find meaningful jobs in the neighbourhood, and condo buildings have struggled to find reliable and timely landscaping services in Regent Park.

“There is a huge gap, and this is an amazing opportunity, because a lot of young people get into landscaping in summer jobs,” she said.

Nayeon envisions an employment social enterprise (ESE) that would train and hire young people to provide landscaping services for buildings right in their neighbourhood in Regent Park.

For the youth who are facing barriers to employment and currently only being offered precarious employment (like fast food and retail), Nayeon’s ESE would offer more than a summer job: it’s a pathway to a long-term career.

“Landscaping is an area where you can upskill,” explained Nayeon, “which is a really important thing when you think about the future of work. Upskilling through education and experience opens doors for a lot of other opportunities.”

And their responsibilities won’t be limited to trimming trees and cutting grass: Nayeon also sees them getting involved with murals and urban agriculture.

“Food security is a huge issue across the city, especially in neighbourhoods with lower income families,” she said. “So in areas like this, through landscaping, we can think about creating more vegetation, creating community gardens, creating vertical gardens.”

The youth hired through Nayeon’s ESE will be trained and will get to shape and maintain their neighbourhood with their own hands — something that can be massively rewarding.

Community-based solutions like Nayeon’s are powerful. At the end of the day, her ESE won’t be dependent on government funding or a grant: it will actually be a sustainable business that helps create a sustainable economy within the neighbourhood it serves.

Nayeon believes that community solutions must come from residents who have lived expertise and sees the pandemic as an impetus to create systems change.

“I think [the government and social service sector] have come to a place where we recognize the importance of lived experience, but sometimes we stop at the arms-length committee level. We need to go beyond that and put residents in positions of power as partners so we can drive change that will directly impact our neighbourhoods.”

Right now, governments and social service organizations tend to see folks who live in poverty and BIPOC as service recipients. However, it’s important to acknowledge these individuals’ power, resilience, and strength. We must shift our mindset to think of them as leaders and champions who can actively create change in their own neighbourhoods.

“That’s how we create opportunities where we’re enabling residents to contribute in a way that’s going to support their own lives and also support our city.”

Nayeon joined CSI’s Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals program in 2020 to improve her entrepreneurial skills and turn her vision into reality. As Nayeon continues to build her ESE, she’s looking for connections with other entrepreneurs who have built ESEs, and folks who work in housing and development within Regent Park, and a mentor who can help her strengthen her business plan. (Get in touch here!)

And as we inch closer to a post-COVID-19 world, Nayeon reflects on the changes she hopes to see.

“I want our world to be a little bit more equitable and just: a fair place for everyone. So that things you can’t control, like what you look like when you’re born, the family you’re born into — whether that is race, class, gender — don’t become a determinant for how your life is going to turn out,” she said. “Who you are is a barrier in itself, and so many people are falling behind because of it. If that continues, it comes at a cost of people’s lives being lost. […] We can’t afford to do that anymore. […] So I would love our city to be a fair place, a just place, an equitable place, where everyone gets a decent chance at a good life.”

Our Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals program is designed to equip the next generation of changemakers with the skills, resources, and coaching they need to make an impact. Check out other stories from program participants here!

Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals is made possible with the support of the Government of Canada.

Telling your story unapologetically

Tonya Surman smiling and speaking to crowd

At CSI we have seen over and over what incredible things can happen when people come together to make change. One of the ways we are doing that is through one of our newest programs, Women of Ontario Social Enterprise Network, a provincial partnership which is part of the Federal Government’s Women Entrepreneurship Strategy.

Media Equity for Entrepreneurs is Part 1 of WOSEN’s Women-Centered Innovation Learning program, an online interactive workshop will offer entrepreneurs a personalized media training toolkit that will help you determine how your story should be told.

An excerpt from the course description:

as women and non-binary leaders from various backgrounds, being boxed into a story of a phoenix rising from the ashes of oppression can be difficult. it limits the scope of your business and changes your story for those learning about your work for the first time. and yet, press and media is a necessity for getting your business out there to potential clients, leads, and partners. as social enterprise owners, it is essential for your message to be disseminated to those you want to reach while staying true to your entrepreneurship journey. your story is your first impression to the market. that means you must fiercely and unapologetically protect who is telling your story and how.

in this interactive workshop, sisterhood media will offer you a media training toolkit personalized to your triumphs as a social entrepreneur that will help you determine how your story should be told. we will focus on key descriptors of your mission and impact and how that translates into press about you and your business. by identifying your brand’s story and how it should be documented, we will work through case studies of exemplifying when you should or should not continue with media engagements that will undermine what you are working towards. at the end of this session, you will be empowered to have your story reported on your terms.

If you’d like to learn more about — and register for! — this program, click here.

 

We’re All In This Together: The WOSEN Program

At CSI we believe in the synergies of connection, the explosive potential of partnerships, and the transformative power of movements. We see them happening every day with collaborators across Ontario and Indigenous regions.

We see them in one of our newest programs, Women of Ontario Social Enterprise Network (WOSEN), a provincial partnership which is part of the Federal Government’s Women Entrepreneurship Strategy. We are building strong connections with our partners in the project, Pillar Nonprofit Network, NORDIK Institute, SVX, Lean4Flourishing, Eve-Volution Inc., and The Social Enterprise Institute. It’s so exciting to be co-designing this work together – we can feel the sparks across our Zoom video calls each week!

Jo Reynold, CSI’s Social Innovation Specialist, says, “It just makes sense to work in collaboration with other social enterprise organizations. Together we share our practices, connect entrepreneurs, and better understand our impact. WOSEN is a model for how social enterprise services can be offered to better meet people where they are at.”

The story of WOSEN emerges out of trust built from past working relationships with the O.N.E. Social Enterprise Partnership, and beyond. Within those relationships we saw our potential to really shift how entrepreneurial supports are designed in order to unlock the potential of diverse womxn social entrepreneurs. The network allowed us to co-design, evaluate, and share knowledge that provided an emerging innovation eco-system with shared practices to us all meet our potential. 

The WOSEN project aims to support 150 new and 75 existing women-led social enterprises, offers ten women-centered innovation learning courses to 250 people, training for 35 business coaches and connections to investment opportunities through the Women Impact Investor Network.

In 2020 CSI will be offering three WOSEN programs: two Start programs and one Grow accelerator. Our Start program is geared for women who have not necessarily seen themselves as entrepreneurs but are interested in learning more and gaining entrepreneurial competencies along the way. Grow, on the other hand, is designed to support women who have already gained initial traction with their social purpose businesses. These women will receive increased support through coaching, networking, and peer-support in order to take their business to the next level. 

Prior to the launch of CSI’s WOSEN programs in May 2020 we conducted casual, one-on-one discovery chats with folks interested in applying to the program. These chats allowed us to listen to a diverse array of women from our surrounding communities to understand their ambitions and assess the barriers they face, taking into account the support systems that they require to achieve their goals. As a result, we are including things like child care services on site during workshop programming to support participants that have children. 

With women in mind, we are designing our programs around these needs to create a safe and supportive environment for women to learn, thrive and grow not only with their social enterprises but in their own personal development as a social entrepreneur. 

Our programming takes a more human centred approach and will encompass the following design principles at its core: inclusive & accessible, systems informed, decolonized, responsive to the needs of women, and incorporate an ecosystem approach.

“There is so much value created when we meaningfully integrate and practice the WOSEN design principles everyday. I love it when participants feel empowered to share their program engagement feedback to help us re-shape programming in a way that is more effective for them,” says Senior Program Manager, Mitalie Makhani, “Being responsive is not always easy but, it’s all worth it once you see how much more it catalyzes a participant’s journey and the positive impact in their communities. That’s what drives me.”

Agents of Change SDGs Spotlight: Jofri Issac

Group of people sitting in a circle

“I want to help communities make sustainable choices.”

Jofri Issac believes in a world in which every person understands that their choices have an impact on the planet.

To make such a world a reality, he is developing a project to help communities learn about the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and apply that knowledge in their daily lives. His strategy: making the knowledge simple and accessible.

A recent survey showed that, globally, the concept of the SDGs is not well known yet. The study interviewed more than 26,000 people from 174 countries and showed that 50.3% of them did not know the SDGs. On average, people are aware of the problems described in them, but are not familiar with the SDGs concept and framework.

“If I go to the UN website, the explanation of the SDGs can be generic and full of difficult words. What we are trying to create is a way for communities to understand why SDGs are important and need to be implemented,” Jofri says. “We’re trying to create smaller and simpler steps for them.”

Although in its initial stage, the project draws from Jofri’s five years of field experience in rural communities in India, where he worked as a researcher before moving to Canada. This life-changing job gave him the opportunity to meet different communities and dive deep into how they were relating to environmental issues. “Climate change has impacted people in very small but steady ways.”

Jofri holds a Masters degree in Environmental Science and has also started working on a waste segregation tool to help people separate waste properly and reduce cross contamination.

In order to develop his ideas into a viable social enterprise, Jofri joined the Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals program at CSI between March and April 2020. As a part of the Eastern Canada cohort, he went through an intensive journey to practice a number of business development tools and drive change based on the SDGs.

“This course has been like a cabinet or a shelf for me. I had a lot of thoughts and didn’t know where to place them, but the course came as a frame where I can say ‘this goes here, this goes there.’ It gave structure to my thoughts and how to prioritize things.”

The peer-to-peer learning is also a highlight of the program for Jofri. Through the course of eight weeks, participants meet virtually and are encouraged to learn with and from each other. “After each session, people would share links, references, things happening in many places. These are not part of the curriculum, but it holds value, especially for people like me, a newcomer in this country.”

Another highlight of the program for him are the guest entrepreneurs. Erika Reyes, Beth Szurpicki, and Agata Rudd, from Wisebox, and Luke Anderson, from StopGap Foundation, were some of the professionals invited to give participants a clearer understanding of the challenges of starting a social enterprise.

Jofri is now working on ways to bring his ideas to life. After COVID-19, starting a business has become an especially challenging effort. With many environmental events canceled in 2020, he’s had to change his strategy and press pause on some plans.

His commitment to the SDGs 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities), 12 (Responsible Consumption and Production), and 13 (Climate Action) remains strong, though. In times of uncertainty, Jofri’s bottom-up strategy may be just the approach we need to bring viable solutions for our future.

Learn more about the Agents of Change: Sustainable Development Goals program.

Six videos to watch on Orange Shirt Day

September 30 is Orange Shirt Day, an opportunity for meaningful discussion about the effects of Residential Schools and the legacy they have left behind across Canada. The date was chosen because it is the time of year in which children were taken from their homes to residential schools.

Every Child Matters, even if they are an adult, from now on.

Take some time today to make space for uncomfortable truths. These six videos tell the stories of what happened to the Indigenous children who were taken by force from their families and communities.

1. Heritage Minutes: Chanie Wenjack
This Heritage Moment tells the story of Chanie “Charlie” Wenjack, whose death sparked the first inquest into the treatment of Indigenous children in Canadian residential schools.

 

2. Namwayut: we are all one
Chief Robert Joseph shares his experience as a residential school survivor and the importance of truth and reconciliation in Canada.

 

3. Wawahte: Stories of Residential School Survivors
Wawahte tells the story of Indian Residential Schools from the perspective of three of its survivors through archival images and audio. The result is a presentation that is powerful and accessible.

 

4. Death at Residential Schools
Thousands of children died in the Residential School system. And that number only begins to show how lives were erased and loving families were changed forever.

 

5. Understanding Intergenerational Trauma and how to stop it
Trauma is something that can be passed down through the generations. A panel of guests share what they are doing to try not to pass on the effects of trauma to the next generation

 

6. Tanya Tagaq – Retribution
At age 13, Tagaq was sent to a residential school in Yellowknife. She eventually left the school after a failed suicide attempt and completed high school by correspondence.

Do you want to be part of honouring Orange Shirt Day in your community? These are the events happening across the country.

CSI to help implement $3.6M program to create a Women of Ontario Social Enterprise Network

Last Friday in London, the Honorable Mary Ng — Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion — made a an exciting announcement: the federal government is making a $3.6 million dollar investment in the creation of a Women Social Enterprise Network in Ontario (aka WOSEN).

WOSEN builds upon CSI’s last two years with the O.N.E. Social Enterprise Partnership, enhancing social enterprise supports across the Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs.

This investment in diverse women social entrepreneurs in Ontario is part of the Federal Government’s Women Entrepreneurship Strategy.  Other partners in the project include Pillar Nonprofit Network, NORDIK Institute, Okwaho Equal Source, Lean4Flourishing, Eve-Volution Inc, plus The Social Enterprise Institute and the SVX.

The WOSEN project aims to support 150 new and expand 75 existing women-led social enterprises, offer 10 Women-Centered Innovation Training to 250 people, and training for 35 business coaches and connect to investment opportunities through the Women Impact Investor Network.

“CSI has been female-led for 15 years and we know first hand the challenges of getting the support to be able to grow our businesses. With 58% of our members being women, we are ecstatic to be able to serve women entrepreneurs through the WOSEN partnership.” Tonya Surman, CEO Centre for Social Innovation.

A sample of the reaction from Twitter:


If you have an idea that could change the world, become a CSI member today.

Photo by Omar Lopez on Unsplash

CSI Agent of Change launches Women’s Mosque

A woman praying with her head on a prayer mat.

In 2015, Farheen Khan was part of our Agents of Change: City Builders cohort with Azeeza for Women, her social enterprise designed to address the issue of violence against women through health and fitness training.

She is also the Lead Organizer of the The Women’s Mosque of Canada, founded on Good Friday of this year. This mobile mosque will create sacred safe spaces for Muslim Women to connect with their faith, with each other and to heal.

With mosque attacks such as in New Zealand and Quebec City on the rise and hate crimes at a new high across the globe, Muslim Women are known to be at a higher risk of gender-based Islamophobia, it is essential that women and their allies unite and reclaim not just the sanctity of their sacred spaces, but also their own narrative.

We chatted with Farheen about the inspiration behind the Mosque, and its future.

1. Congratulations on the launch of your project! Can you tell me a bit about what that first event was like?
The first event took place at Trinity-St. Paul’s United Church and was attended by nearly 40 women. The Friday sermon and prayer were both led by our co-founder. The event was broadcasted nationally and afterwards, women were so grateful to have such a space for themselves where they really felt a connection.

2. The project launched at Trinity-St. Paul’s United Church. How did that come to be the location? Was it inspired by the “UnMosque” movement?
We decided on location based on the fact that Dr. Revend Cheri DiNovo is someone who can likely relate to our struggle of bringing Muslim women into positions of leadership within religious institutions. As far as the Unmosque movement goes, for sure, I say we are certainly in alignment with the idea of creating more inclusive spaces for mosque goers, but there is also a growing population of women and men that don’t go to the mosque at all. It is our goal to create a space where women can feel welcome and can see themselves in every aspect of the mosque.

3. Do you hope that people from other faiths (or no faiths!) attend Women’s Mosque events?
Yes absolutely, in fact at our first launch event there was a 50-50 split between Muslim and ally women.

4. What is your biggest hope for the Women’s Mosque? What does the world look like if all those hopes come true?
There are a few goals which we are aiming to accomplish in the next few years:

  1. Establish a physical space in Toronto and continue to grow our congregation and encourage women to take on leadership positions and to learn about the faith from a gendered lens.
  2. Engage in conversations with and support the existing mosques towards becoming more inclusive for all marginalized communities – women included.
  3. Continue to expand our work and foster and support the development of similar communities and spaces across Canada. This isn’t just about one space, it’s about creating a movement and really shifting the way in which women are seen and treated within the Islamic faith.

5. How has being involved with CSI impacted your work?
CSI has always been a supportive space, for years we have been working with CSI in some shape or form to create a space for Muslim women and we look forward to the opportunity to continue our partnerships — formal or informal — in the future as well.

6. How can CSI members (or anyone!) get involved in the Women’s Mosque’s work?
We invite CSI members to attend our prayers and attend our upcoming events. Also, if you anyone is interested in donating towards our initial deposit for a physical space, we are looking to raise $12,500 by mid-July. It’s aggressive, but I believe we can do it!

CSI’s Climate Ventures

Climate Ventures is a cross-sector incubator for climate entrepreneurs, innovators, and leaders at CSI Spadina (192 Spadina, Suite 216), offering coworking, community, and programs. Learn more, book a tour, or join us at climateventures.org.


Much of the world is waking up to the reality and urgency of climate change after a summer that included an unprecedented, globally-encompassing heatwave, as well as forest fires, flooding, and droughts.

The UN Secretary General recently warned that we may only have a couple years left to take decisive action to avoid runaway climate change, which could push the Earth into a “hothouse” state leaving parts of our world uninhabitable.

Luckily, we already have all the solutions needed to stop and reverse global warming, so now is the time to dig in and act!

The Centre for Social Innovation has just opened Climate Ventures, Toronto’s first cross-sector climate solutions incubator. Climate Ventures is a lot of things: it’s a dedicated space at CSI Spadina for climate entrepreneurs, innovators, and leaders to work. It’s a community within a community, with already 36 enterprises connected to each other and to our 2,500 members. It’s nearly 20 advisors volunteering their time. It’s a platform for us to hold peer circles, workshops, and events. And lastly, it’s a kind of climate consultancy developing programs in partnership with funders to support and scale climate solutions.

A recent report by the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate found that the world economy could grow by an additional US$26 trillion by 2030 if governments and businesses get serious about stopping global warming. Climate change is not just a threat; it’s also the greatest economic opportunity of the 21st century.

Around the world, entrepreneurs, innovators, investors, farmers, designers, architects, engineers, policy makers, systems thinkers, journalists, activists, Indigenous peoples, and others, have been laying the groundwork for the more sustainable, just, low-carbon economy of the future.

We started Climate Ventures to better support these trailblazers, and also to support the work of our broader community as climate change threatens to reverse the progress our members fight for. For example, global hunger has already reverted to levels last seen a decade ago due largely to extreme weather.

The Climate Ventures space was designed by Peggy Sue Deaven of Peggy Sue Collection, an award-winning, CSI-accelerated venture, for functionality, connection, and inspiration. Almost everything in the space has a sustainability story, such as being made locally by a member (green wall by Ripple Farms, tables by Just Be Woodsy) or out of low-carbon materials. We even have a light fixture in the shape of an HFC molecule made in Cabbagetown.

The Climate Ventures space includes Hot Desks and desk clusters, a lounge and meeting area, screens and a projector, a kitchenette, a meditation nook, and more, all part of CSI Spadina with its private offices, makerspace, member lounges, meeting rooms, event spaces, and hundreds of social entrepreneurs and innovators.

We opened Climate Ventures despite some pretty devastating funding cuts over the summer after the cancellation of the province’s cap and trade program. For a while, we weren’t sure we’d be able to pull it off. But we pushed through, and we’re determined to keep growing this important work.

Help us by promoting Climate Ventures to your networks (see sample social media post below). Join us as a member, become an advisor, or partner with us!

Thanks to all of our CSI members, our partners, and the many people working on the market, policy, and culture shifts needed to blaze a trail to our low-carbon future.

To your impact,

Barnabe Geis

Director of Programs at CSI
barnabe@socialinnovation.ca

CSI Launches Cleantech Fellowship For Ontario Entrepreneurs To Tap Into $2.5 Trillion Market

The 2017 Global Cleantech Innovation Index ranked Canada’s cleantech sector fourth in the world. To help build on this success, CSI is launching a fellowship that will support entrepreneurs working to scale enterprises in this market expected to be worth $2.5 trillion by 2022.

Part accelerator and part fellowship, the program is accepting applications until June 22. Up to twenty successful applicants will be be provided with workspace, coaching, advisory services, impact measurement support, and connections to leaders, funders and investors.

“Ontario is a leader in cleantech startups that employ approximately 130,000 people and are an integral part of building a more resilient, low-carbon economy,” said CSI’s Director of Programs Barnabe Geis. “Working in everything from farming to transportation, these entrepreneurs are reducing pollution and improving the health and safety of communities across the province.”

The cleantech startups will work out of CSI’s new Climate Ventures space at 192 Spadina Ave. The space, opening in September, will serve as an incubator and hub for people working on solutions to climate change. Entrepreneurs can learn more and apply at: socialinnovation.org/cleantech.

For more information contact:
Barnabe Geis – Director of Programs
barnabe@socialinnovation.ca

About the Centre for Social Innovation:
The Centre for Social Innovation is a nonprofit social enterprise, a global pioneer in coworking, a community and catalyst for people and organizations that are changing the world. The CSI Community is home to over 1,000 nonprofits, charities and social ventures in Toronto that employ over 2,500 people and generate combined annual revenues of around $250 million. CSI members are turning social, environmental, economic and cultural challenges into opportunities to make the world a better place.