As reported on the Advisory Council on Social Entrepreneurship, made up of members from business, government and community met for the first time to discuss how to implement and maximize the potential of the business sector for innovative responses to social issues in BC.

Premier Gordon Campbell, Finance Minister Colin Hansen, Parliamentary Secretary for Social Entrepreneurship Gordon Hogg, B.C. MLAs, and members of the Advisory Council for Social Entrepreneurship met in Vancouver to discuss how to implement and maximize the potential of the business sector for innovative responses to social issues in B.C. February 7, 2011.

Members of the Advisory Council for Social Entrepreneurship include:
Dr. James Tansey – Associate Professor, University of British Columbia

Jim Fletcher – Managing Director, Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital

Murry Krause – City Councillor, City of Prince George

Al Etmanski – President, Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network

Faye Wightman – CEO, Vancouver Foundation

Ida Goodreau – Board of Directors, Vancouver Foundation

David Berge – Senior VP, Community Investment, Vancity

David LePage – Program Manager, Enterprising Non-Profits

Janice Abbott – Executive Director, Atira Women’s Resource Society

Randy Wiwchar – Director of Community Services, City of Courtenay

Margaret Mason – Partner, Bull, Housser & Tupper

Janet Austin – CEO, YWCA

Alison Lawton – Executive Director, Mindset Foundation

Dr. Bill Glackman – Associate Professor, Simon Fraser University

John Restakis – Executive Director, BC Co-operative Association

Paul Lacerte – Executive Director, B.C. Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres

Dr. Jennifer Charlesworth – Executive Director, The Federation of Community Social Services of BC

Andrew Wharton – Special Advisor, Disability Strategy, Ministry of Social Development

Why this matters to British Columbia:
* The committee’s mission includes finding new ways to bring market-based resources to bear on our most pressing social issues.
* The council is a new tool in understanding and addressing complex social problems like poverty, environment, adequate housing, addictions and crime.
* Better outcomes for individuals, families and community include leveraging our existing resources to attract new capital. BC social enterprises create jobs and are economic generators.

“We need to find new ways to approach long-standing social issues. This Advisory Council is a platform for creative thinkers and innovators to assist us in developing new ideas for the public’s benefit and accelerate social change. Social innovation has proven itself to be an extremely successful approach in strengthening communities. ”
– Parliamentary Secretary for Social Entrepreneurship Gordon Hogg, Surrey-White Rock MLA

“The new Council on Social Entrepreneurship signifies the Government of B.C.’s recognition of both the existing and emerging challenges faced by individuals, families and agencies in providing care and the innovative solutions that are emerging from all sectors. Having a council comprised of representatives from community, business and government signifies a new spirit of working together that will focus our collective creativity and resources.”
– Al Etmanski, President of Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network (PLAN)

Additional information:
The External Advisory Council on Social Entrepreneurship was established to ensure direct consultation, advice and feedback on proposals to support social innovation in BC. Members of the Council are appointed by the Parliamentary Secretary for Social Entrepreneurship to the Minister of Finance, a role created October 25th, 2010, to assist the BC government in seeking new and innovative ways to help BC communities tackle the most pervasive social challenges of the day.

The Council is drawn from government, community and business agencies with an interest in social entrepreneurship, including credit unions, foundations, academics, local and/or provincial government, business, investors, social entrepreneurs and innovators.

In addition, the BC government announced the establishment of an Assistant Deputy Minister’s Committee on Social Entrepreneurship, charged with the mandate to maximize social innovation within government and act on the recommendations of the new council and previous committee recommendations.

Both committees will report to BC’s first Parliamentary Secretary for Social Entrepreneurship Gordon Hogg.

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