Work at CSI for the day with our new Lounge Pass!

Next Economy Conversations

Our monthly tête-à-tête with industry leaders 

Around the world, there are movements calling for systems change: a world that is sustainable, equitable, and prosperous for all. But what will that world look like, specifically? How are we each going to play a role in defining those specifics? Next Economy Conversations, our newest event series, brings the people building systems-level solutions into conversation so we can answer those questions, and learn from their successes and failures.

Join us at the next Next Economy Conversation

April 13, 2024

learn more about our past guests

A black and white photograph from the 1940s of the Roseland Theatre in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia.
You may know Viola Desmond from school lessons, from history books, from the ten dollar bill, or from the Viola Desmond room on the third floor of CSI Spadina! Desmond was an entrepreneur who helped to catalyze the Canadian Civil Rights movement.
Screenshot 2024-01-25 at 3.03
STEPS Public Art, one of CSI's many esteemed alumni, celebrated a pretty big milestone recently - 10 years! After their big anniversary party at CSI Spadina, we knew we had to catch up with them to learn more about their experience and their first decade of social impact. Read on for the full interview!
A view of 720 Bathurst Street. It is a brick building, 5 storeys tall, and we are looking at the eastern facade, which faces Bathurst Street. The northern wall is covered in ivy.
On Monday, January 22nd, CSI launched the official RFP process for anyone interested in the purchase of the storied brick and beam gem, 720 Bathurst St., that has been home to CSI Annex for the last decade. 
A crowd stands in front of a riser at CSI's 2023 Holiday Gathering. In the foreground, we see the backs of party goers. In the background, we see CSI CEO Tonya Surman giving a speech.
For the sixth year in a row, CSI honoured members with the Bow Tie Award during our annual Holiday Gathering. The Bow Tie Award, named after former CSI Executive Director Adil Dhalla’s proclivity for community leadership (and a certain kind of neck adornment), celebrates those who have gone above and beyond in facilitating connection and strengthening community impact.
A group of people are seated and standing in a circle around Tara, Community Manager at CSI Annex. Event takes place on the ground floor of CSI Annex (720 Bathurst St).
Giving Tuesday encourages us to “give, collaborate, and celebrate generosity. These are some of the CSI members participating in this year’s Giving Tuesday, how your donation will support their impact work, and more information on where to donate.
Canadian Connections team poses at the back of an empty truck
We take a deep dive into the differences between nonprofits and charitable organizations in Canada and look at it through the lens of CSI Member Canadian Connections, who recently transitioned from being a nonprofit to a registered charitable organization.
orange shirt day
September 30 is Orange Shirt Day and Canada’s first National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. It’s a day to honour the survivors and victims of the residential school system and reflect on the atrocities Canada committed against Indigenous Peoples.
A view of 720 Bathurst Street. It is a brick building, 5 storeys tall, and we are looking at the eastern facade, which faces Bathurst Street. The northern wall is covered in ivy.
We have some big news! The world is changing and so must CSI! We told our members earlier today and now we want to tell you. CSI has made the decision to put 720 Bathurst up for sale and consolidate our operations into CSI Spadina.
CSI Spadina in the ground floor kitchen, looking out towards the lounge and meeting rooms. In the foreground is a kitchen counter, with waffles, toppings, and glasses of coffees and teas. In the background, CSI CEO Tonya Surman is speaking into a microphone on the left. In the middle and on the right, a variety of people stand and sit, listening to her speak.
One of the keys to CSI's magic is our Community Animator Program (CAP) and, specifically, the Community Animators themselves! Through this program, we've worked with more than 1,000 exceptional individuals who have each brought a little something different, and a little sparkle, to our spaces. And we're so glad to have had them in our community, because we've learned that each and every one of them has some exceptional talents, skills, and experiences to offer the world!  

Part of the CSI Connects Initiative

CSI Connects helps you build the relationships and collaborations to make change happen. Come to learn, share, make friends and allies. It’s as much about learning as it is about fostering belonging, cohesion and community resilience.

Homelessness & Hygiene Lab

Pipes on a white brick wall

helping those who need it most

In the months since the COVID-19 related economic shutdown, the homeless population of Toronto has more than doubled. People are reluctant to enter shelters because it is difficult to maintain six feet of physical distance from others, and they are concerned about the probability of contracting COVID-19 in such close quarters. This has led to an increase in the number of homeless encampments across the city, encampments that do not have access to washroom facilities, laundry, or clean water.

Concurrently, the measures put in place to combat the pandemic shut down most of the public spaces that people experiencing homelessness count on to access these facilities including libraries, cafes, and community centres. The City of Toronto has identified a need to provide these citizens with the hygiene facilities required to remain clean and healthy.

THE CHALLENGE

We are looking to build a socially responsible, community based solution to the issue of hygiene in homeless encampments. 

THE LAB

The City of Toronto and CSI are working together to facilitate a set of meetings between homelessness experts and social entrepreneurs. These meetings will outline the challenges associated with hygiene in homeless encampments, the intersecting issues that may arise from proposed solutions, and will allow entrepreneurs to work together to develop prototype solutions that can then be implemented and tested in the community. We anticipate three lab meetings scheduled in September and early October, with prototypes ready to be presented by the end of October 2020. 

Part of the CSI Solves Initiative

At CSI, we use labs, social R&D and prototypes that identify new and improved models that can transform existing paradigms and reveal market opportunities. Learn more about our approach here.

Every One Every Day: TO

Every One Every Day

Making our neighbourhood better, one project at a time!

The CSI Institute has teamed up with Every One. Every Day. in London, England to share the Our Neighbourhood project. 

Our Neighbourhood Workshops and Project Starter Kits help you build practical projects in your neighbourhood, like planting trees or planning a community celebration. Each kit is focussed on practical project ideas, like planting trees or planning a community celebration. These projects enable neighbours to gather and learn from each other.

Download the Our Neighbourhood Program Booklet for more information.

About Our Neighbourhood Starter Kits

There are four project starter kits that you can work on with your neighbours, while remaining at a safe physical distance, and in your own home.

These kits are perfect for a group of neighbours who want to participate in something, make social connections, and work on projects that strengthen our neighbourhood.

Each of the Our Neighbourhood Starter Kits include materials, equipment, training, support, and helpful hints and tips! Materials can include anything from soil and pots, to bee hives, to seed packets.

The starter kits are a way for you to join with a mini-neighbourhood social ecosystem to plan and execute projects that will help make our community better and stronger.

There are different-sized kits for different-sized groups of people. Each of these kits have a minimum of 3 people, and can accommodate groups of up to 15 (depending on the kit). If you want to join but don’t know other people who would like to start these projects, we can help you find more people in your neighbourhood.

Kit List

Our Neighbourhood Pollinates: build beehives and plant pollinator gardens

Our Neighbourhood Reads: children’s stories and activity programming

Our Neighbourhood Blooms: beautifying our community with bulbs and blooms

Our Neighbourhood Stories: collect and share stories of our vibrant neighbourhood

Download the Our Neighbourhood Booklet now for more information!

Making our neighbourhood better, one project at a time.

Illustration of person using a laptop

Part of the CSI Solves Initiative

The CSI Institute Create helps creates labs, Challenges, and prototypes that demonstrate new models & solutions are possible. Learn more about the approach here.