Social innovation makes waves for Canada’s oceans

There was a wave of excitement last night at the official launch of an all-new oceans microgrant program: Ottawa Wave Makers. Social innovators, entrepreneurs, and ocean enthusiasts from a number of sectors gathered at HUB Ottawa to share ideas about putting the spotlight on Canada’s oceans.
The program is a first-ever partnership between WWF-Canada and HUB Ottawa that will award $28,000 in grants to projects that raise awareness in Ottawa about the importance of healthy oceans. Eligible projects could include campaigns, events, art installations, conferences, pop-up events, mobile applications, and workshops. We want people to get creative and work together.

WWF's Andrew Dumbrille makes waves at the mirco grant launch.
WWF’s Andrew Dumbrille makes waves at the mirco grant launch. ©Gregg Teckles

The ocean defines so much of what it means to be Canadian – our values, our history, our food, and our lifestyles are all connected to the seas that surround us. We’re truly an ocean nation. And while the ocean isn’t visible from our nation’s capital, it’s definitely having an influence on people here. As we heard from each of the speakers at the launch event, Ottawans are already talking about our oceans and working hard to ensure they remain healthy for the benefit of future Canadians.
HUB Ottawa CEO Vinod Rajasekaran speaks at the Ottawa Wave Makers microgrant launch.
HUB Ottawa CEO Vinod Rajasekaran speaks at the Ottawa Wave Makers microgrant launch. ©Gregg Teckles

Ottawa Wave Makers aims to amplify that conversation by providing a boost to innovative ideas and by supporting the creation of a vibrant network of oceans champions here in the nation’s capital. Social innovation is about people coming together across disciplines and sectors to create and inspire lasting change for people and communities. With the strong connection that already exists between people and nature, fostering social innovation for sustainable environmental awareness is a natural application of this growing movement. That’s why WWF is so excited to be partnering with HUB Ottawa, a local leader in innovation and community-building.
©Gregg Teckles

Stay tuned to learn more! We’re looking forward to checking in with updates and stories featuring the people and projects of the Ottawa Wave Makers community. Grant applications are open until April 30th, and successful projects will be announced on World Oceans Day, June 8th here in Ottawa.
In the meantime, spread the word about Ottawa Wave Makers and help us to make waves about healthy oceans!