Nova Scotia is one of only two provinces with a law that recognizes social enterprises as businesses. This allows you to use your current business or new business idea as a tool for contributing to the greater good of the province. Basically, owning a Community Interest Company (CIC) lets you contribute to the community and pursue your social goals while still making the money you need to live on.
So what types of businesses are considered social enterprises? A good example is a farmer’s market. If you run a for-profit farmer’s market in a low-income urban area, your business could be considered a social enterprise because its filling the area’s need for cost-effective, healthy food options. Or your company might become a social enterprise by focusing on youth employment. You might provide well-paying, stable jobs for the youth of Nova Scotia to help reduce the amount of young people moving out of the province each year.
If you’re interested in starting a social enterprise or converting your current business into one, Social Enterprise Network of Nova Scotia has a multitude of resources that can help you. The site lists resources designed to help educate business owners, get them involved in the community, and help them obtain funding for their businesses.
Because of the law in Nova Scotia that recognizes social enterprises as businesses, business owners like you are able to give back to their communities in ways that previously weren’t possible. If you want to make an impact in your community, take some time to consider what you need to do to turn your business into a social enterprise.