The Social EnterPrize awards were created to recognize and celebrate leadership and excellence in social entrepreneurship across Canada. This year these awards were presented to four organizations at the 2013 Social Enterprise World Forum, the 2013 winners are:
Gold Award Winner- Under $1M Revenue Category
Vancouver’s EMBERS Staffing Solutions is Canada’s only non-profit temporary staffing business. Their mission is to provide employment opportunities to people facing employment barriers. Their economic mission is to grow in profitability in order to generate a source of income to reinvest into EMBERS employment programs, which assist and train their workers. In the last 4.5 years, EMBERS has employed over 1100 people with more than 50% transitioning into full-time work. They are currently scaling up their enterprise as they’ve grown from averaging 8 people a day just six months ago, to 35-40 people a day currently.
Gold Award Winner- Over $1M Revenue Category
JUMP Math provides math resources for teachers, tutors and students and distributes this method to schools and tutoring organizations with a special concern for those that serve low-income and at-risk students. For example, their REACH Community Fund provides non-profit and community organizations with the resources and tools to assist marginalized and at-risk children in the grades of 1 through 8 to improve their understandings of math. JUMP Math derives its income from a mix of sales of program materials and training as well as grants and donations. JUMP Math is growing rapidly – the number of students using its program has increased at a compound annual growth rate of over 40% the past three years.
Silver Award Winner- Under $1M Revenue Category
TurnAround Couriers Inc. is a social purpose business dedicated to helping at-risk youth in Toronto and the GTA overcome social and economic obstacles by providing them with the chance they need to get ahead. They exclusively hire at-risk youth to be couriers and back office staff. They also partner with a local Toronto based college to ensure that their couriers continue their studies; they are not funded to do this instead their ability to hire youth is driven by their ability to win business in the marketplace from firms that need courier services. TurnAround Couriers is a fast growing Same Day courier business in Toronto and the GTA, making it the third largest bicycle courier firm in Toronto.
Silver Award Winner- Over $1M Revenue Category
The YWCA Metro Vancouver Hotel/Residence is a self-sustaining enterprise that also generates significant organizational revenue which directly funds YWCA programs and services. While catering to visitors in downtown Vancouver and earning the prestigious TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence award for the 3rd year running since winning the Best Bargain Hotel by TripAdvisor in its 2009 Travelers’ Choice awards, it also offers emergency and transitional accommodation to individuals in need. In the past year, the YWCA Metro Vancouver Hotel/Residence provided approximately 56% of their room nights as subsidized accommodation to women in crisis, families in transition, students, seniors and refugees.