New venture formed to advance inclusion


Community Living Innovation Venture provides funds, support for new social innovation strategies
Thursday March 8, 2012 — Michelle Strutzenberger

Rather than looking to government or established associations to make changes in the sector that works with people who have a disability, an entity has been formed recently to support grassroots partnerships.

The Community Living Innovation Venture has been created to support collaborations that are advancing the inclusion and belonging of people who have a disability through the use of social innovation strategies.

These could be partnerships between a mix of not-for-profits, businesses, families and community groups.

The Venture is providing support in the form of financial resources, as well as building support teams around initiatives to encourage their growth and durability.

For its first year, the Venture has just awarded $100,000 in funding to four existing and fairly solid collaborations.

The goal is to help advance the work these partnerships are undertaking, as well as learn from their startup and development experiences.

In future, more fledgling collaborations may be chosen to be supported, says the Venture staffer Maggie Vivlang.

Asked about the greatest possibilities she sees in what The Venture is doing, Maggie notes that success will be inclusion for all, of course.

The Venture just recognizes that sometimes communities need a little support in becoming places of belonging. 

“It’s about seeding that very basic community development work that results in communities where people with disabilities belong,” says Maggie, qualifying this work is not about hiring more staff or receiving a lot of government funding.

The entity sees achieving its goal by seeking solutions to old problems, considering risk-taking a strategy and failure a teacher.

The Venture was initially formed through a two-way partnership between what is now LIFT Philanthropy Partners and Community Living British Columbia. Vancity Community Foundation has also now become a member of the steering committee and a primary partner.

To learn more, visit the Venture page.

For a related story on the collaborations recently awarded new funding, click here.

If you have a story to share or feedback on this article please contact Michelle at 800-294-0051, ext. 27, or e-mail michelle(at)


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