Celebrating great social ventures – with a suprise ending

Nearly 300 guests gathered last night at the Bluma Appel Salon at the Toronto Reference Library to learn about and celebrate some of Toronto’s most interesting green social ventures. On the heels of a nine-month, multi-faceted innovation challenge, contestants, investors and a wide range of supporters gathered to meet the ClimateSpark finalists and hear about investment and prize decisions.

Rahul Bhardwaj, President and CEO of the Toronto Community Foundation told us he’d been grinning all week thinking about the “poo-tential” of winning venture ZooShare Biogas Co-operative which will turn zoo animal waste and grocery store green waste into clean energy. ZooShare received TCF’s Green Innovation Award in the amount of $40,000 while fresh new thinkers from Young Urban Farmers were awarded $10,000 to bootstrap their efforts to put local Toronto back-yards into food production.

The Toronto Atmospheric Fund announced our recent decision to support Summerhill Impact’s Shuttle program to support reduced car travel with a grant of $150,000 over two years, and to provide bridge financing to ZooShare in the amount of $250,000.

The party ended too early when an emergency situation at street level required the whole party to vacate the building. Unfazed, guests proceeded to the nearby Pilot Tavern to continue networking.

Check out the ClimateSpark documentary film and more news about follow-on activities at climatespark.ca

For another perspective on the event and the Challenge, check out a great post at SocialFinance.ca

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