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Social Enterprise Examples

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According to a recent statistical study, there are 600+ social enterprises in New Brunswick. Throughout Canada there are thousands of social enterprises, and the global number is too large to count. We are including a few illustrative examples of social enterprises and invite you to go to our link button below to find additional local and  global examples.


The Truffler:

14 year old Chris Cushing of Rusagonis, New Brunswick, established a social enterprise called Truffler a hand-made chocolate business which redirects profit into funds to build a drinking water well in Tanzania. Cushing takes orders for his 10 varieties of dark and milk chocolate truffles online though social media, as well as on his own website, Truffler.ca. His venture was featured on the CBC Suppertime News in  New Brunswick, July 29, 2013.


“Changes 360”:

As a registered charity, “Changes 360” is a social enterprise in Fredericton, NB, that provides personalized job readiness training and life coaching to those who are facing challenges to maintain or enter employment.  The programming is supported through is a boutique that sells quality used goods which also provides top customer service training and experience for clients. Link to Pat Carlson interview.

Inside Art:

Inside Art is a cooperative by medium security inmates in Mountain Institution, BC. This opportunity to create art and make business decisions about the cooperative has resulted in inmates who were previously excluded from society and not inspired to embrace correctional programming, now doing so. Thus, they have a way to learn new skills and and build confidence. This investment in the inmates has given them a means of transitioning back into the community which ultimately saves considerable tax dollars ($90,000 annual cost per inmate).

Mill City Grows:

Mill City Grows  fosters food justice by improving physical health, economic independence and environmental sustainability in Lowell, Massachusetts through increased access to land, locally-grown food and education.

The Saint John Community Loan Fund:

The Saint John Community Loan Fund  promotes investment in the community and in people. Through microfinancing, it helps individuals create income, build assets, and attain greater self-reliance by providing:  business loans,  employment loans, affordable housing loans, non-profit loans, financial literacy training, community leadership training, enterprise development, youth entrepreneurship, and a matched savings program.

Shorefast Foundation:

The Shorefast Foundation is a Canadian registered charity in Fogo and the Change Islands, Newfoundland and Labrador. “We undertake projects built on social entrepreneurship, and we use entrepreneurial methods to create positive change.We look for and use new ideas, products, resources and opportunities in novel ways to tackle challenges. And we will know that they have worked by the benefit they will have for the community, by cultural resiliency and by finding new ways in an old continuity.”


Toms is an example of a for-profit business model that is working for a social cause through its non-profit subsidiary ‘Friends of Toms’. The company sells shoes and eyewear, and it is well known for its ‘one for one’ business model. With one pair of toms sold, one pair of shoes is provided to a child in the developing world; and with every pair of eyewear sold, part of profit is utilized to fund a program to restore sight for people in developing countries.

Urban Aboriginal Fair Trade Gallery:

The UAFTG is a community-owned social enterprise which is a resource for Aboriginal artists from the Vancouver region. This enterprise was born from opportunities which developed after the creation of the largest mural in western Canada  (7600 sq. ft) by a community of Aboriginal artists.  The mural depicts the challenges of the past and the hopes and opportunities of the future. View this video Through the Eye of the Raven  for the inspirational story.

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