Nov. 5, 2019

Ten Calgary social enterprises vie for four $25,000 prizes at What’s Next YYC

Come and be a part of live voting for the Audience Choice Award at Nov. 21 event

Social entrepreneurs have a mission to make things better in addition to making a profit. What’s Next YYC is a new initiative to recognize some of the many social entrepreneurs in the city.

In its inaugural year, the awards had more than 30 applications from local social enterprises that have already won awards or successfully completed a social enterprise support program. The 10 finalists have been selected and they will be vying for one of four $25,000 prizes, with the audience a part of the selection process.

  • Photo above: Dan Overall, executive director, Trico Foundation, second from left, with Jim Dewald, dean of the Haskayne School of Business; Wayne Chiu, CM, AOE, ICD.D, and chairman, Trico Charitable Foundation; and UCalgary President Ed McCauley, at the announcement of the Trico Foundation Social Entrepreneurship.

Finalists for What’s Next YYC:

  • aGRO Systems Inc. The firm captures what is unwanted and discarded and transforms it into something unique and valuable. Supporting sustainable local farmers
  • Beaverlodge: An app that turns energy efficiency for your home into an easy game that saves you real money
  • CareFind Centralized and interactive platform connecting parents to real-time openings of accredited/licensed daycares, preschools, out-of-school-care and approved day homes
  • CMNGD: Employing people facing poverty through a sustainable commercial laundry service
  • Colouring It Forward: Colouring books using art by Indigenous artists
  • Deepwater Farms: Calgary’s first aquaponics farm
  • Fresh Routes: Mobile grocery store bringing affordable food to neighbourhoods with barriers
  • PwrSwitch: Platform supporting victims of cyberstalking, cyber-harassment and high-conflict divorce through the collection of electronic communications  
  • Tsuut’ina Apiaries: Provides culturally fulfilling employment to low-income Indigenous Peoples while combatting the declining bee and native plant populations
  • Universal Access: Accessibility consultants providing certified barrier-free environments
Nov. 21 Social EnterPrize event

Tickets for the Nov. 21 Social EnterPrize event are available until Nov. 14.

Help local social enterprises get to the next level

Each of the finalists will present a two-minute pitch at the Social EnterPrize event on Nov. 21. There will be live voting at the event for the Audience Choice Award. Three additional awards of $25,000 each will be selected by a judge, with an organization only able receive one award for the evening. The judge will be Charmian Love, Entrepreneur in Residence at the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship at the Said Business School at Oxford University.

“We are delighted to introduce an award that builds on the work of Calgary and area’s social enterprise support system and helps local social enterprises get to the next level,” says Dan Overall, executive director, Trico Foundation.

There is a robust ecosystem to support new ventures that are working to solve social issues such as the social enterprise incubator through Innovate Calgary and the Social Enterprise Fund. There are also incubators and competitions at Calgary post-secondaries including Bow Valley College, Ambrose University and the University of Calgary. (For a listing of all of the programs that supported the 10 finalists, connect with the Trico Charitable Foundation blog.)

“We are proud to be helping to build a flourishing social entrepreneurship ecosystem in Calgary,” says Jim Dewald, dean, Haskayne School of Business. “Congratulations to all the finalists and we look forward to hearing your pitches at the Social EnterPrize event.”

The Social EnterPrize event on Nov. 21 will be a recognition of the best social enterprises in Calgary and Canada. Skwachàys Lodge, the 2019 recipient of the $100,000 Social EnterPrize, will accept their award and Dr. Dewald, PhD, will deliver a keynote speech about the power of the market to transform our world.

Registration for the event closes Nov. 14, 2019

Purchase tickets today to ensure a chance to vote for the Audience Choice Award for What’s Next YYC, recognizing the best in Calgary social entrepreneurship.

The Haskayne School of Business and the Trico Charitable Foundation believe Calgary can be a global hub for social entrepreneurship and leaders in the evolution of capitalism. The Trico Foundation Social Entrepreneurship Centre was established at Haskayne in 2019 thanks to a $5-million gift from the Trico Foundation to support student experiences inside and outside the classroom including community-based learning, internships, curriculum development and research. To build on this momentum, both organizations are collaborating on the Social EnterPrize award for outstanding Canadian social enterprises and What’s Next YYC, which awards prize money to Calgary and area based social enterprises. Learn more.