Interested in applying for a Social Innovation Fund grant? Use this guide to learn more.

Improving the lives of Canadians—and contributing to a more resilient society—requires breakthrough ideas and approaches, game changing strategies and collaborations, and continuous innovation. To support this work and to commemorate its 75th anniversary, the McConnell Foundation launched the Social Innovation Fund in 2012. 

The Social Innovation Fund (SIF) supports organizations looking to strengthen their capacities in order to scale for greater impact. SIF grants to high potential/high impact organizations are integrated with special convenings plus technical and peer support through Innoweave or the Social Innovation Learning Program (SILP). The Social Innovation Fund was originally launched with two streams —one for early stage innovations and a second for scaling up successful social innovations and for mature organizations diversifying program and business models. As a response to the COVID-19 crisis, we are now opening a third stream: Organizational Rebuilding that will help organizations meet the surge in demand by becoming more adaptive by introducing new business and service models.

 

How does the Social Innovation Fund Work?

The McConnell Social Innovation Fund will support work that is congruent with the Foundation’s own mission and granting priorities, in the following categories:

 

Early Stage Consolidation  

  • Community sector organizations that have proven or promising early stage innovations and that need additional support to create the capacity and conditions to effectively sustain them.

Re-Tooling for Growth 

  • Established organizations that are operating successful social innovations which they are planning to scale up to meet growing demand.
  • Established organizations (over $1 million annual budget) that are introducing new innovations that significantly modify or complement their core business. 

 

 In addition to providing direct grants through the Fund, the Foundation may convene meetings with other social innovators, policy makers and funders; arrange access to Innoweave workshops; and commission studies or reports.