Multi-Sector Benefits of Energy Transition Programs

Year Complete: 2021
Grant Amount: $59,883
Local Government: City of Edmonton, AB
Local Foundation: Edmonton Community Foundation

Project Purpose

To ensure communities and organizations with low income, immigrant and Aboriginal citizens will be consulted and included in programming goals and action in energy transition programs.

Key Lessons Learned

There is great power in building relationships from a place of openness and humility. Philanthropy for Active Civic Engagement (PACE) describes the impact of relationships well in an essay on systems-based changemaking: “In complex adaptive systems, the macro emerges from the micro, and it is the interactions between and among individuals that drive small- and then medium- and then large-scale transformation.” The success of this project and the opportunities to scale its impact rests on the bedrock of intentional, strong, and authentic relationships.

Large municipalities are very complex and it is difficult for outside agencies or potential collaborators to seek and find the right people.  Community foundations often work with urban agencies as a proxy for the municipality, and success in these relationships is driven by the same distinctly human factors that lead to success in any other relationship:

  • understanding the community landscape and who the key players are
  • mapping or identifying the participatory ecosystem
  • connecting the practitioners with the funders and community organizations working on shared interests
  • finding common ground and shared outcomes
  • building relationships and trust
Additional Information and Resources

The intentional direction of resources to organizations focused on the needs of low income, indigenous, and immigrant citizens allowed early-stage ideas to become multiple phase projects. It also revealed the uniqueness and vitality of EcoCity’s contributions. An example of this ongoing work can be found here.