Episode 18: SEED Winnipeg
SEED Winnipeg was formed in the late 1980s as a result of a major study into the economic development needs of Winnipeg’s inner city. After a number of years of searching for resources, SEED Winnipeg opened its doors in January 1993 with two staff on Ellice Avenue in the West End.
SEED eventually grew into two offices with twenty staff, one on Logan Avenue in the Exchange District, and one on Selkirk Avenue in the North End.
In April 2006, SEED rejoined its forces into our current offices at 80 Salter Street in the North End. SEED is the proud owner of this beautifully renovated building which will enable SEED to continue to grow and develop both its staff and its programs.
SEED has a solid, diverse funding base that enables long-range planning and offers continuity in program delivery. The ability to operate programs over an extended time frame also makes it possible to assess program impacts over longer periods of time.
SEED envisions a world where opportunities exist for all people and communities to realize their hopes and it’s mission is to build strong communities and increase opportunities for people through financial empowerment programs and services through their five pillars of financial empowerment:
- Financial information, education & counselling
- Help accessing income-boosting benefits & tax credits
- Safe & affordable financial products & services
- Access to savings & asset building opportunities including business ownership
- Consumer awareness & protection
Louise Simbandumwe, Co-Director
Louise played a lead role in working with partner organizations to develop SEED’s financial empowerment programs. These programs have been replicated by other community-based organizations in Manitoba, Alberta, Ontario and BC. SEED now delivers a range of financial empowerment interventions through a network of over 100 organizations in Manitoba.
SEED has worked with other organizations to build a regional and national community of practice for the emerging field of financial empowerment. Louise is a founding member and co-chair of the Manitoba Financial Empowerment Network and a founding member of the national Asset Building Learning Exchange and currently serves on its Steering Committee.
A former refugee, Louise is passionate about human rights and social justice. Her volunteer commitments include the Public Interest Law Centre Advisory Committee and the Immigration Partnership Winnipeg Council. She also served on the advisory committee for Manitoba’s poverty reduction strategy and the Ministerial advisory committee for Canada’s first poverty reduction strategy.
Louise has a Bachelor in Commerce from the University of Saskatchewan and a Masters in Comparative Social Research from Oxford University. She has developed and taught innovative courses on financial empowerment, community economic development, and human rights advocacy at the University of Winnipeg.