Coming soon to Ontario?

If you have an early stage social venture or you’re still at the conceptual stage, the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) may be of interest to you.  It is a one-year program that will train you to use your abilities in effective ways to set up a social enterprise or social purpose business – developing your abilities and your venture plan at the same time.

Ready to sign up? Not just yet.

The SSE is not yet operational in Ontario. Having started in London, the SSE is now operational throughout the UK and recently in Australia.  Is it time to bring this program to Ontario?

That’s what we at SiG@MaRS wanted to determine and so with the support of the Ontario Trillium Foundation we conducted a feasibility study to determine:

  • How the SSE in the UK began and what it offers
  • Would a franchise of the SSE suit and thrive in Ontario?
  • Should Ontario develop its own similar program or should it join the SSE network?

In 2009, MASS LBP was contracted to conduct the feasibility study.  They completed a report based on literature reviews, interviews both locally and internationally, as well as five community consultations. The conclusion and recommendation drawn from the study was that “Ontario would benefit from a program focused on social impact and providing an alternative pathway to the acquisition of entrepreneurial skills.”

The recommendations and next steps were discussed at the SiG@MaRS Information Session held in March 2010. Based on the findings of the study, SiG@MaRS is developing an advisory committee for a program tailored to the needs of social entrepreneurs in Ontario.

If you’re interested in the “School for Social Entrepreneurs in Ontario” report including the Executive Summary, both can be viewed here at the MASS LBP website.

You’re also welcome pick up a hard copy of both documents at the SiG@MaRS office.

Danielle Johnson

Danielle is an Associate working with the Social Innovation Generation at MaRS. See more…