learn more about the niagara falls ryerson innovation hub
March 2, 2021
Social Innovation in the Non-Profit Sector

This is the third in a series of three on social enterprises

While the private sector has been rapidly adapting to the needs of the community, so too is the non-profit and charitable sector. Spark Niagara is proud to be one of the only business incubators that also supports non-profit organizations.

The COVID-19 pandemic has illustrated just how important non-profits are. The pandemic has also created an increased role for non-profits and charities to assist in the provision of public goods and respond to the needs of communities. A 2020 survey conducted by the Ontario Foundation Network found that although non-profits faced numerous challenges as a result of the pandemic, such as funding shortfalls, increased demand, and forced closures, the non-profit sector has also successfully been able to build resilience and serve the needs of their communities through collaboration with local organizations, grassroots groups, and mutual aid collectives. This report also highlights the importance of non-profit organizations in the processes of reopening and economic recovery.

Socks and Snacks Outreach Initiative, a non-profit organization that provides food, clothing, and other products to unhoused people in Niagara Falls, bases their operation out of Spark’s Zimmerman Building, where they prepare care packages to distribute every weekend.

“Advice I would give is that everyone can do it. If your heart is into it, you will find a way. The beautiful thing is that other people will help without you even having to ask.  We have been fortunate from word of mouth and our community. People really do want to help, it just makes them feel more comfortable knowing and trusting the people who are in charge. No conspiracies, no big companies making money off of the needy; just good hearted people working together to help others through the day. Love always wins and we want everyone to know that they aren’t alone - if you want to start a non profit Niagara has all the resources you could ever need. Just ask for help!”

Think starting a non-profit is right for you? We can help! Talk to a Spark business coach today.

Frequently asked questions
What does my membership get me?

Our memberships are all-inclusive pricing which means W.I.F.I, Utilities, Janitorial service, coffee and many other amenities are included. They start at 3 months! Memberships also offer business services including business coaching, perks and discounts, access to Spark’s Member Portal, events and workshops, and much more!

How long can I have a membership for?

Unlike many other incubators, Spark is here for you in the long run. You're welcome to participate in our entrepreneurial community as long as you'd like.

How is Spark connected to Ryerson University?

We work with Ryerson University and the City of Niagara Falls on the Niagara Falls Ryerson Innovation Hub. This initiative is for tech-based startups in or looking to move to Niagara Falls, Canada to grow and scale their business.

Will Spark invest in my company?

We are happy to help provide guidance on the necessary steps towards receiving external investments. That being said, we will not invest in your business nor are we affiliated as partners in your business.

I am a part of another incubator, can I still join Spark?

Spark stands by the mission of building our future with collective impact. We accept entrepreneurs whether they are affiliated with another incubator or not. We aspire to bring together the best talent in Niagara regardless of background.

Do you have a free trial?

We offer a free 7 day trial for serious applicants only.

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