RBC Social Enterprise Accelerator launch
Wednesday, February 1, 2017
This month kicks off the RBC Social Enterprise Accelerator (SEA), a 6-month program for nine Calgary-based startups for whom the coupling of social impact and profitability is core to their mission and business model.
Innovate Calgary, with support from Bow Valley College, Momentum, Mount Royal University, Propellus, Trico Foundation, University of Calgary and others, will deliver the program that concentrates on accelerating a social enterprise’s impact and profitability. There is no cost for participants as SEA is generously supported by RBC.
Participants are assigned an experienced executive or entrepreneur as a mentor, who also understands social impact. The mentor will help address specific business challenges, mature their business model and technology, create increased impact and grow revenue. Participants will also be part of a founder’s roundtable, enabling them to learn and discuss challenges with their peers, and receive access to pitch coaching and other relevant workshops delivered by Innovate Calgary’s community and industry partners.
SEA concludes with a demo day where each startup will present their progress to a panel of experts from RBC, Innovate Calgary and partner organizations, and receive feedback on future growth.
The inaugural SEA program is pleased to work with the following innovators:
Pam Krause, Calgary Sexual Health Centre – The WiseGuyz program
WiseGuyz engages junior high boys in a weekly program that has four modules: human rights, sexual health, gender, and positive relationships. The program addresses issues young men face to give them tools to engage in healthy relationships; understand the connection between masculinity and male norms, sexuality and violence; and provides targeted education, skills development, and support to help young men achieve sexual well-being and healthy relationships.
Sue Crawford and Michael Purdy, Enable
Enable is an online matchmaking platform that partners families and people affected by disability, to reliable student caregivers. By creating meaningful partnerships between people, and connecting with accessible businesses, Enable fosters a stronger sense of belonging for people of all abilities within communities.
Colin Smith, Green Event Services
Green Event Services provides equipment for responsible event waste management. The company delivers recycling stations to events and helps to manage waste reduction by creating a recycling plan with staff and volunteers.
Lourdes Juan, Leftovers Foundation
LeftOvers Calgary is an organization that rescues food from being thrown in the garbage, and ensures it gets to service agencies in need such as the Calgary Drop-In Centre, Calgary Interfaith Food Bank, Alpha House, Making Changes Association and Inn from the Cold. LeftOvers delivers perishable food to these locations to alleviate stress and fill the kitchens with fresh items.
Chad Zelensky, Lowen's Natural Skincare
Lowen’s Skincare is a family-owned and operated business rooted in the creation of effective hypoallergenic skincare products. They use locally sourced, certified organic, Non-GMO and fair trade ingredients in their products which include balms, moisturizers, scrubs and creams.
Derek Luk, Mindful Mental Training
Mindfulness is a form of attention and awareness training cultivated through meditation. The company’s focus is mental health prevention by providing Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) in an online platform. The platform hopes to remove barriers that prevent people from accessing clinically supported mindfulness-based interventions, with the ultimate goal of preventing suicides.
Paul Harvey and Eric Reynolds, Mobile Escape
Mobile Escape exists to awaken the senses by bringing people together to think differently about the world around them. The company creates an immersive experience through the concept of escape rooms, where participants are put within a real-life scenario and solve puzzles to eventually escape the room.
Zachary Champoux, Nomad EcoProducts
Nomad EcoProducts manufactures all of their products, primarily yoga mats and clothing, from recycled materials with the aim to divert materials from landfills and lower GHG emissions in the atmosphere.
Gina Cherkowski, STEM Learning Lab
STEM Learning Lab engages teachers and students in high quality, hands-on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), STEAM (STEM + Art) and Maker learning experiences. The company offers educational programs for teachers as well as innovative and fun programs for youth.