We support social enterprise and community organizations in Winnipeg
Social enterprises create inclusive employment opportunities that benefit individuals and Winnipeg as a community. We strive to help build these businesses both directly through grant programs and social purchasing, and more broadly by helping to improve the procurement policy landscape these social enterprise partners work within.
Each partner organization we work with has different needs for support, so we make every effort to ensure our work fits their needs.
LITE's grant program supports short-term (sometimes casual) employment and training opportunities designed by community-based organizations to meet the supportive workplace needs of their participants.
Supported projects have short- and long-term outcomes for individuals. For example, a job leads to "money in your pocket" AND helps build a work history.
To learn more about the jobs created through our grants program, visit our Grant Program page.
Job Skills Volunteer Program
Getting a strong start in the labour market often means mixing education with experience. Our Job Skills volunteer program aims to provide both, to people who need it.
Each year, we bring volunteers into our office to teach them the basics of administration, provide coaching for communications skills, and more. Those who complete this program can count on a positive reference for the next step in their careers!
Learn more on our Volunteer Program page.
Education & Advocacy
The social economy is a diverse field with many unique challenges and opportunities.
Through our work with community organizations, social enterprises, and private businesses, we work to help people understand what it takes to create and run businesses designed to benefit the community they operate in.
More information about this work is available on our Education & Advocacy page.
Certification for Social Enterprises
We represent Buy Social Canada in the prairies region, to certify and support social enterprises, and help them achieve their aims for benefit of the community.
The social enterprise model in Manitoba and across Canada are gaining ground and popularity. Our goal is to connect these businesses with procurement partners on both the purchaser and supplier sides, so both can do a great deal.
Learn more at the Buy Social Prairies website!
Social purchasing uses the power of purchasing to support a social outcome. In our case: we make purchases that solve barriers to employment.
Each purchase we make supports an aim and provides one of our partner organizations with revenue.
Wild Blueberry Pancake Breakfast
The Wild Blueberry Pancake Breakfast is LITE's major fundraiser and is held every November.
An average of 800 community-minded Winnipeggers enjoy a locally-sourced breakfast, listen to local talent, and (we hope!) meet new and old friends.
Thanks to their support, attendees help hire participants from 5 community organizations to cater the event and create approximately 40 jobs on event day! Money raised during the event is used to fund our other purchases.
Christmas Hamper Program
The Alternative Christmas Hamper is LITE's response to the downside of the traditional charity model: when free goods flood a neighbourhood, local businesses suffer, resulting in decreased employment. By purchasing food and goods from inner city businesses and social enterprises, LITE supports much-needed local employment while helping grow a local economy.
Purchases are used to create a hamper for residents living in Winnipeg's inner city.