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SOCIAL ENTERPRISE 101

- Organizers Bill April 25 Event as Opportunity to Help Tackle Local Poverty -

(COBOURG) – An April 25 information session will introduce the concept of ‘social enterprise’ as a potential way to address poverty in Northumberland County.

‘Moving Forward on Poverty: Social Enterprise 101’ is the name of the event taking place on Monday, April 25, from 9:30 am to 1:30 pm (lunch included) at Fellowship Baptist Church, located at 469 Elgin St. W. in Cobourg. Municipal politicians, local residents, community service/program staff and volunteers are being invited to attend the free event to learn more about social enterprises. More details about the event are available by calling the Health Unit at 1-866-888-4577 or visiting www.hkpr.on.ca.

(NOTE TO MEDIA: Members of the media are also welcome to attend for photo/interview opportunities)

Guest speaker at the Cobourg event is Shahil Thomas, Manager of the Toronto Enterprise Fund, who will discuss his group’s work to support social enterprises in the Toronto area that create employment opportunities for people who are marginalized. The Toronto Enterprise Fund defines ‘social enterprise’ as a business operated by a charity or non-profit organization that sells goods and services, with the dual purpose of generating income and achieving a social, cultural or environmental mission.

The April 25 event will also feature representatives from three locally-based social enterprises – Cycle Transitions, Beyond the Blue Box and Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore – sharing how their organizations became a reality and the lessons learned along the way. Discussion will also take place at this event on how a networking group could be started in Northumberland to support new and innovative social enterprises in this area. To foster discussion on this, participants will have an opportunity to network at lunch provided as part of the event.

“The April 25 event will introduce the concept of social enterprise to the Northumberland community,” says Elsie Azevedo Perry, one of the event organizers, and a Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention Coordinator with the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit. “Creating and supporting new social enterprises in Northumberland could be one way to create jobs and skill-building opportunities to support people who are marginalized and living in poverty.”

The HKPR District Health Unit is working with the Northumberland United Way, Northumberland Community Legal Centre, The Help Centre and Green Wood Coalition to organize the April 25 event.

This month’s Social Enterprise 101 session is the third in a series of Moving Forward on Poverty events held in Northumberland over the past two years. In 2014, a poverty-simulation event let participants experience real life stories of people living in poverty. In 2015, an event was organized in which municipal leaders, service providers and citizens met to look at ways of taking action on local poverty.

“We’re still working to move forward on local poverty, and participants at past events have told us they want to take action,” says Lois Cromarty, Executive Director of the Northumberland Community Legal Centre. “It’s important to show how social enterprise can impact local poverty, and that’s why we hope the April 25 event will provide people with practical resources and tools.”

For media inquiries, contact:

Elsie Azevedo Perry, Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention Coordinator, HKPR District Health Unit, (905) 885-9100,

or Lois Cromarty, Executive Director, Northumberland Community Legal Centre, (905) 373-4464.

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