TORONTO — A series of consultations is underway to inform and guide the creation of an Indigenous Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (ICIE) in Toronto.
The City of Toronto has retained The Pontiac Group, an Indigenous-led consulting firm, to undertake consultations with the Indigenous community in the Greater Toronto Area and develop a vision and business plan for the ICIE and its services.
The centre is currently under construction at a city-owned commercial space at 200 Dundas St. E. The city is expected to take possession at the end of 2019.
The purpose of the ICIE is to provide support for Indigenous entrepreneurs looking to build businesses, social enterprises, not-for-profits, collectives or co-operatives by providing access to resources and workspace, states a release.
The consultations will include:
the creation of a Leadership Advisory Council of Indigenous community and business leaders to give input and approve the vision and business model for the ICIE;
one-on-one engagement with leaders in the Indigenous community;
a collaborative effort with key Indigenous community stakeholders and professional organizations to produce a community survey;
community consultation sessions with Indigenous entrepreneurs, focused on identifying their needs and interests; and
an online survey (via toronto.ca/indigenousincubator) enabling Indigenous entrepreneurs from across Toronto and Canada to share their insights and ideas on how the ICIE can support Indigenous entrepreneurs.
Consultations will occur throughout the coming fall and winter months and the findings will be presented to council next spring.