Investment Readiness Program

We all want communities where everyone can belong and thrive. The Investment Readiness Program (IRP) supports new and innovative ways of getting us there.

The IRP is designed to help social enterprises to explore, grow and flourish across the country, contributing to solving pressing social, cultural and environmental challenges. You can apply for between $10,000-$100,000 in non-repayable capital to help launch, design, measure and scale your social enterprise, to get ready to access investment in Canada’s growing social finance marketplace.

So if you’ve got an enterprise that does good, whether in its second week, second year or decade, the IRP may be for you.

What is the IRP opportunity?

Business doesn’t have to be just about the bottom line. Community leaders know that business can be done differently, and can be a tool for social innovation that unlocks effective solutions to pressing social, cultural and environmental concerns.

Successful applicants will get between $10,000-$100,000 to invest in their social enterprise and help make an even greater positive change in their community.

These funds can be used to research, launch, design, measure and scale up your social enterprise to achieve your sustainability plan to take on investment in the future.

  • Funds are intended to be used to access outside expert advice or services to:
  • Explore a new business idea or develop a business plan to test your inspiring idea
  • Create a marketing plan to reach new audiences
  • Prepare the documentation needed to approach potential investors as you move to taking on investment capital
  • Plan new products or services to grow revenue

The funds are not eligible for use towards core operating costs. They should move your enterprise forward along the spectrum from idea to investment-ready.

This program is a related to the Government of Canada’s announcement of a $755-million Social Finance Fund to support innovative solutions to social challenges.  Community Foundations of Canada is a partner in the Investment Readiness Program (IRP) which helps allocate funds from the Government of Canada to social purpose organizations preparing to successfully participate in the social finance market. Locally, the Abbotsford Community Foundation has been chosen to be a Regional Partner for the Investment Readiness Program.

What is a social enterprise?

An organization or program that is mission-driven, aiming to sell goods or services to earn a revenue, while also helping achieve positive social, cultural or environmental results.

From farm-share co-ops to after-school arts programs, social enterprises serve the needs of communities all across Canada. Some examples of social enterprises include:

  • A non-profit that employs people facing barriers to employment to perform eco-friendly home retrofits
  • A charity that runs a catering service and provides culinary training for marginalized youth
  • A co-op that offers affordable laundry and delivery service while giving work experience to people living in poverty
  • A business that creates and sells footwear made from recycled materials in order to reduce waste and uses some of its revenues to fund environmental programming.
  • A construction business that provides skilled trades training and employment opportunities to newcomers and single parents
  • A store that offers local artisans credit to purchase food in exchange for their crafts

Where can I find more information?

Community Foundations of Canada is allocating non-repayable funds to organizations preparing to successfully participate in the social finance market. Visit www.irp-ppi.ca to find out more information and begin the application process.