The first Community Impact-a-thon Challenge was hosted recently at Grenfell Campus by Navigate (Grenfell Campus and CNA-Corner Brook) and Memorial's Centre for Social Enterprise.
The event consisted of community workshops and consultations over a three-day period.
"We would like to, thank the many brave participants who showed up and threw their social enterprise hearts and ideas into the ring!" said Navigate manager Allison Rowe. "Hats off to the six teams who pitched their business ideas - their passion for making a difference in our communities was inspiring!"
The first-place prize of $1000 went to Jessie Donaldson, whose social enterprise "Art with Jessie" is described as "paying art forward to make art accessible and inclusive for children and persons facing socioeconomic challenges."
Roshayne Mendis took the $750 second-place prize for "Tea Cup NL, "sharing tea culture for connection, wellness and a greener environment, one cup at a time."
And Marcia Huyer and Robert Hengeveld took third place and $500 for "Cloud Factory," an artist run organization fostering, facilitating and promoting art, culture and creative exploration in Western NL.
Other teams who competed include:
- Corner Brook Farmers Market - Gayathri Murugan and Abayomi Taiwo
- Spirit Horse Therapeutic Arts - Gallery, Gift Shop and Artist's Gathering Place - June Farnsworth
(Opening soon on Fisher Street in Port au Choix! Come see June's beautiful artwork inspired by the land and its diverse peoples.)
- Fresh and Healthy Juice Bar – Indeewari Bandara
"We also would like to thank our speakers, discussion hosts, mentors and judges who graciously volunteered their time to inspire and guide our participants to be the change they want to see in our communities," said Ms. Rowe, adding that events like this would not be possible without the hard work and dedication of the many hands behind the scenes who made it all possible.
Speakers and special guests included:
- Renee Pilgrim (GNP Health and Wellness, and GNP Collective Health) who delivered the keynote address about the great work happening in the health and wellness sector on the Great Northern Peninsula and in the Bonne Bay area
- Presenters and discussion hosts who shared stories about opportunities for rural sustainability in food security, arts & tourism, Indigenous communities, green economy and tech, housing, health and social wellness including Josh Smee (Food First NL), Pamela Gill (TNL), Chief Peggy White (Three Rivers Mi'kmaq Band), John Davis (Qalipu Development Corporation), Steve Gaulton (Community Mental Health Initiative), and Louise Gauthier (CB Nuit)
- Barry Lewis Green from Epic Engage for his motivational session that kick-started the Saturday morning by challenging participants to define who their heroes are, ask themselves what values drive their personal desire for social change, and use those unique passions and gifts to help tackle the world's social problems big and small
- Mentors and judges Josh Smee (Food First NL), Louise Gauthier (CB Nuit), Carla May (NLOWE), Denise Gibbons (Navigate Board, and CNA) and Dr. Gillian Morrissey (CSE), who had the daunting task of deliberating and choosing the pitch winners!
Event sponsors and funders included the Fry Family Foundation, the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency and the Provincial Government of Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Industry, Energy and Technology.
"The Centre for Social Enterprise is thrilled to have worked with Navigate and Grenfell Campus on this wonderful event," said Dr. Gillian Morrissey, manager of Memorial's Centre for Social Enterprise. "We look forward to collaborating on more social enterprise and social innovation-focused activities for the western and Great Northern Peninsula regions of the island in the future. Thank you to all who participated, our guests, funders, sponsors and volunteers for helping us make the Community Impact-a-thon a huge success!"
Learn more about social enterprise from the Centre for Social Enterprise and Navigate.