Catalyst: Community Finance Initiative

Collaboratively scaling the place-based community finance ecosystem
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The Catalyst: Community Finance Initiative is a multi-year initiative to develop enhanced ecosystem and policy infrastructure to support the start-up and scale up place-based community finance organizations in urban, rural and Northern communities in Ontario and across the country.

Our Mission

We are seeking to:

  • Collectively design relevant ecosystem and provincial public policy infrastructure to ensure that community finance institutions can successfully and sustainably start-up and scale their impact;
  • Facilitate knowledge sharing amongst place-based finance and capacity organizations; and
  • Engage existing and new community finance organizations that can serve organizations, projects, and enterprises in selected urban, rural and Northern communities, alongside mainstream leaders in philanthropy, public policy, and financial institutions.


    • Learning Community of current and interested place-based community capital stakeholders;
    • Community Capital Research Report including case studies, map, data, and comparative analysis of Canadian (federal and provincial), US and UK policies that support community capital institutions
    • Action Plan including potential policy interventions to scale up community capital institutions in Ontario as well as potential ecosystem infrastructure interventions with an appropriately phased plan to scale up community capital institutions in Ontario and across Canada
    • Tools and templates for community capital leaders. 

    Join Us

    We are actively seeking collaborators and contributors to provide input and insight on how we can collectively build ecosystem and policy infrastructure for community capital to thrive. We’ll have many opportunities for you to participate, but you can start to join the conversation by providing your feedback in our stakeholder survey.

    Whether you are a credit union, community futures organization, municipal government, foundation, or another active or emerging community finance stakeholder in Ontario interested in this work, we want to hear from you.


    A growing, wide range of networks, intermediaries and funders are supporting this initiative.


    Five must read resources on place-based impact investing

    A curated collection of articles on place-based investing from recognized and respected sources.

    Place-Based Impact Investing: Catalyzing women-led enterprises in Ontario’s COVID recovery

    This article highlights the need to support women-led and women-serving businesses with place-based impact investment solutions.

    Five Ways to Catalyze Community Capital in Ontario

    This article summarizes five (5) key actions for the community capital movement to consider in supporting organizations and enterprises that can lead at a local level.

    Why Community Capital Institutions Could be the Key to Recovery

    How Canada can leverage community capital institutions to help lead recovery and regeneration efforts that can support local communities.

    Place-Based Impact Investing: Three Briefs for Practitioners

    Three practitioner briefs designed to focus on building strong ecosystems, mapping opportunities and capacities, and deploying capital.

    Beyond Donations: How Two Canadian Organizations are Rebuilding Community Wealth Post-COVID

    How 10C and VERGE Capital are leveraging innovative ways to mobilize social finance for community resilience.

    Get in touch with us

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