News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

July 4, 2017

PROVINCE ANNOUNCES REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS FOR SOCIAL IMPACT BONDS



The Manitoba government has taken a major step to launch its first social impact bond (SIB) by posting a request for proposals for a consultant to help create an innovative, made-in-Manitoba approach to fund social programs, Families Minister Scott Fielding announced today.

“As a partner in caring, our government is creating a new channel for philanthropy we hope will help solve costly, complex social issues and benefit the broader community,” said Fielding.  “Social impact bonds are a new tool to tap into Manitoba’s potential to find creative solutions and foster new business, social and community partnerships.

“I want to be very clear.  This is about building on current social service programming.  SIBs will support and work alongside current programs, but do not replace them.  They are one tool in the toolbox.”

Social impact bonds encourage the private sector and community groups to partner with government to deliver prevention programs designed by experts and front-line service organizations.  The government sets a specific outcome to achieve in collaboration with service providers, secures private investment and repays investors only if the service provider meets the project’s outcome.

“SIBs find a way to use private capital for the public good,” said Jeff Wharton, chair of the province’s Social Impact Bond Committee.  “While traditional government programs may be funded regardless of whether they are working, SIBs would only receive tax dollars based on success.  This type of innovation will give Manitobans better value for their money and provides an efficient addition to current funding, not a replacement.”

Wharton noted hundreds of SIB initiatives are underway around the world but are still emerging in Canada.  One partnership in Saskatchewan created a support home for single mothers and is expected to save that province up to $1.5 million over five years by reducing the number of children in government care.

In Manitoba, mandate letters in the departments of Families and Justice directed ministers to find new ways to reduce the number of children in care and rate of re-offenders in the criminal justice system.

The province is now requesting proposals from qualified professional consultants to provide expertise and mediation between the government, social service providers and investors.  The consultant would recommend an innovative proposal for a landmark SIB, develop a contract with outcome targets and evaluation criteria, develop a framework for future proposals and help build government ability to manage projects.

The participation of Indigenous businesses is encouraged.

The RFP will be posted online at www.merx.com/ManitobaHousing with a 30-day deadline for applicants.

- 30 -