Are the dollars you spend supporting your local economy?
On Vancouver Island, local governments and other large purchasers spend billions of dollars each year on goods, services and infrastructure projects. This purchasing power could open doors to employment, increase local training, support local businesses and provide multiple community benefits. Social procurement is legal, do-able and makes a meaningful difference.
Social procurement is a growing best practice that aligns procurement spend to provide added value and community benefits. The Coastal Communities Social Procurement Initiative (CCSPI) aims to take this best practice thinking and approach, and build a more resilient and more inclusive Vancouver Island and Coast.
What Is Social Procurement?
Social procurement is an additional way that local governments and purchasers can direct resources towards community benefit. Since 2016, local coastal governments have been identifying ways to integrate social procurement principles and actions into their processes.
Why is Social Procurement Important?
Communities today are facing complex social, economic and environmental challenges. Every year, local governments across BC award contracts for goods and services with significant public funds. Social procurement focuses on ‘best value for money’ beyond just a financial transaction. It is becoming an increasingly expected practice that RFPs include local community and environmental impact assessments and goals, at all levels of government. Procurement becomes a tool for building healthy communities.
How Can Social Procurement Create Additional Value?
Social procurement can be adapted to meet specific community needs. Some communities have integrated into RFPs criteria such as employment of marginalized population groups, local food, housing affordability, community engagement, local economic revitalization, beautification and cultural amenities. The first step is identifying what your community’s challenges and needs are, and how procurement can help address them.
Social Procurement In Action
These local case studies from CCSPI member communities provide great ideas for how to begin implementing social procurement. They also discuss important outcomes and lessons learned throughout each process.
CCSPI members have engaged in training of staff and vendors; accessed region-specific tools, templates and consultation to adopt social procurement practices; and have launched over 20 initial pilot projects- totalling over $25 million in social procurement spend. Next steps include launching comprehensive vendor training and support, opening up the membership to other purchasers, and collectively measuring and evaluating impact.
Meet the CCSPI Team
Get In Touch
For more information about CCSPI or to schedule services,
please contact Robert Fisher, Project Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org
Get CCSPI updates – sign up for our newsletter