In 2011, Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo (SPWB)began facilitating a process to build resilience in Wood Buffalo’s social profit sector in order to increase its capacity to address complex social problems and enhance quality of life in the region. By the end of the Suncor Energy Foundation funded (SEF) 5 year project, activities had been accomplished along 4 streams: capacity building, social innovation, collective impact and stewardship of the process. One of the outcomes of this project was the establishment of FuseSocial, a backbone organization to the social profit sectors whose mandate is to enable social innovation for the Wood Buffalo Community. Capacity Canada was part of the original SPWB project, participating on the Steering Committee, providing workshops and supporting individual organizations.
Following the success of the Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo (SPWB) project, SEF requested that Capacity Canada submit a proposal to develop a National Capacity Building Strategy (NCBS) that builds on the previous project and uses social innovation to build resilient, sustainable communities in the areas where Suncor has operations through local intermediaries or backbone organizations. Wood Buffalo is one of those communities. As a starting point Capacity Canada reconvened the original Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo Coordinating Committee to determine a path forward. In partnership with FuseSocial, Capacity Canada launched the first Board Governance Boot Camp outside of Ontario, and developed a Board Chair in Residence pilot to support board transition with recruitment and succession planning. However in May of 2016, Wood Buffalo experienced devastating wild fires which required the complete evacuation of the community. Every sector was also impacted, including the social profit sector. At the request of Suncor Energy Foundation and FuseSocial, Capacity Canada worked intensively with FuseSocial and the social profit sector post wildfire to support re-entry and recovery efforts. Specifically Capacity Canada co-designed and delivered gatherings of the social profit sector, in Edmonton in May and in Fort McMurray in August. Over the next year Capacity Canada worked to support the social profit sector and continues to deliver board governance boot camps, workshops, and direct support to executive directors and boards of local social profits.
Initiatives that have been a focus over the past 2 years include – Fostering Collaborations ; Social Procurement; Community Index of Wellbeing; Economic Impact Study; Blueprint for Resiliency – Disaster response lessons learned; 4 Wildfire Survey – a snapshot of the state of social profit sector at 3, 6, 9 and 21 months.
Social Prosperity Canada aims to build the capacity of community benefit organizations throughout Canada to improve quality of life for all.
Leading Canada in building socially prosperous communities.