The entities that require social finance to operate and scale their operations are social enterprises, community-based organizations, and social purpose businesses.
Social Enterprises or Enterprising non-profits
This model of social venture has emerged as a strategic response of the non-profit and voluntary sector, as community-based organizations seek to become more self-determining and financially sustainable.
Enterprising non-profits (often referred to as social enterprises) are revenue-generating entities that are owned and operated by a charity, non-profit, or co-operative. The profits generated are reinvested into fulfilling the mandate of the parent organization.
When successful, this enterprising approach not only enhances the organizations’ financial sustainability, but also increases their social / environmental impacts.
What distinguishes these ventures from traditional organizational activities is the sale of a good or a service to the marketplace. Without this feature, the activity is more likely a project or program.
Charities, non-profits, and co-operatives may find themselves in need of positive cash flow to bridge them from project operation to contract payment, or may face an opportunity to purchase assets that benefit the community.
Go to the Community Forward Fund to learn about what they have to offer.
Social Purpose Businesses (SPB)
Social purpose businesses are commercial for-profit entities, created by entrepreneurs to address social or environmental issues using business approaches.
These are enterprises that add to the traditional (financial) bottom line at least one (and sometimes two) other bottom lines or priorities: these are commonly the social and environmental bottom lines.
More than corporate social responsibility or a focused promotional activity, the social purpose business places equal importance on each bottom line, while recognizing that without profit, it will likely not survive to meet its other important goals.
THE WHAT, WHY, WHO, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY, THE HOW OF SOCIAL FINANCE IN CANADA.
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The contents of Your Guide to Social Finance is general in nature, current only as of the date of publication and is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended to provide professional investment or financing advice. Please consult a certified professional before making any decision regarding your investments and financing.