How can Canadians build thriving communities?

By moving from an economy for me, to an economy for all.

Microlending. Local investing. Social finance. Food security. These are some of the tools that are being used by leaders in communities across the country to create an economy that emphasizes shared prosperity for all Canadians.

These are just a few of the topics that will be front and centre at EconoUs2017, a national conference in Calgary that’s bringing together community leaders from across Canada, whose goal is to make people and the planet a priority, while creating good jobs.

Powered by the Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNet), EconoUs2017 takes place in Calgary and area in mid-September, hosted by Thrive and partners REAP, Calgary Economic Development, the Institute for Community Prosperity at Mount Royal University, Momentum, and Calgary Regional Partnership.

This will be the eighth annual EconoUs conference, and it’s the first time the event is taking place in Calgary.

“EconoUs2017 is a reminder that it is OUR economy over which WE make the choices that guarantee (or not) the future viability and prosperity of our communities.  An event like this reveals options and ideas that could transform the way we do business, think about work and invest in community prosperity,” says James Stauch, co-host for EconoUs and director at the Institute for Community Prosperity.

“We know that unless you are able to creatively adapt, diversify and reconfigure your city or town’s economic base, you are living on borrowed time.  This conference is one well-timed opportunity to reflect on this, and to work toward a 21st century norm where the economy serves people, not the other way around.”

EconoUs2017 aims to inspire participants from a wide range of community economic development sectors to collaborate more and innovate faster, to build a better future for all. EconoUs2017 aims to get delegates moving, exploring and interacting with the host city and each other. Learning opportunities include neighbourhood hubs, community development strategies, community powered renewable energy, community wealth building, anti-racism, main streets and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. You’ll be able to learn from a wide range of community leaders, including speakers Chief Robert Joseph (Reconciliation Canada), Shaun Loney (a serial social entrepreneur based in Winnipeg), Gordon Slade (Shorefast Foundation) and Beatrice Alain (Le Chantier de l’économie sociale).

EconoUs will showcase a variety of local economic initiatives. There will be tours to Cochrane and Olds to highlight rural economies that are using community-based economic development tools; as well as local economy tours featuring co-ops, plus social entrepreneurship and alternative financing solutions.

Trico’s Social EnterPrize awards will be handed out during the conference, with two Canadian social enterprises receiving $100,000 each.

Rounding out the event, which takes place Sept. 13 – 15, will be local food and beverages, and local music. In keeping with the conference goal of caring for people and the planet, EconoUs2017 aims to create zero waste.

Thrive and the EconoUs2017 partners encourage everyone who is interested to sign up to attend, and be a part of three days of learning and working together.

“This is an inclusive conference, and we want all people that are working towards an inclusive and resilient community to be a part of the conversation at EconoUs2017,” says Barb Davies, learning and leadership coordinator at Thrive.

To register:

*· The early bird deadline has been extended until June 15. For more information and to register, visit the registration page;

*· You can pay using 100 per cent Calgary Dollars;

*  You can apply to the Shared Prosperity Bursary Program if financial barriers are an issue. This bursary program is made possible thanks to Calgary Neighbourhoods, United Way and the Calgary Foundation;

  • Students receive reduced rates.

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