Social Venture Institute (SVI)

September 27 - October 1, 2023

Attend Canada’s longest-running gathering for social entrepreneurs.

For 27 years SVI Hollyhock has gathered CEOs, entrepreneurs, leaders, and investors who have a vision of business as a force for good. This year 100+ people, who care about humanity and the planet and who see the urgent need for significant social change, will come together for a 5 day gathering on the land. More than a conference, SVI is a dynamic gathering of mission-driven leaders who are committed to generating positive societal and environmental impact.


Hli Haykwhl Ẃii Xsgaak, Melanie Mark

SVI True Confessions Speaker
Former MLA Vancouver Mount Pleasant, former Minister of AEST and TACS, only First Nations woman to be elected in BC’s Legislature and Cabinet

Ahmed Rahim

SVI True Confessions Speaker
Co-Founder, Board Chair & Chief Alchemist | Numi Organic Tea
Hollyhock presenter, Esther Park

Esther Park

SVI True Confessions Speaker
CEO | Cienega Capital

Kristin Hull, Phd

SVI True Confessions Speaker
Founder, CEO & CIO | Nia Impact Capital

Dawn McGee

SVI True Confessions Speaker
CEO | Goodworks Evergreen, Goodworks Ventures, and Goodworks Development
Karen Joseph, Reconciliation Canada

Karen Joseph

SVI Case Study Presenter
CEO | Reconciliation Canada

Lovena Harvey

SVI Case Study Presenter
CEO/Co-founder | Gathering Place Trading

Alima Ali

SVI Workshop Presenter
Founder | North Star Visioning

Amy Moroni

SVI Workshop Presenter
Founder | Long Table Grocery + Consulting

Meet Your Team

Laurel Dault

Hollyhock Leadership Institute Director

What to Expect

  • True Confessions presentations from social venture leaders
  • Interactive case studies featuring real strategic challenges
  • Skill building workshops
  • Opportunities to get business advice from 1:1 advisors
  • Peer mentoring and networking
  • Fun! Evening parties, campfires, and connection time
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True Confessions Speakers

2023 True Confessions speakers:

  • Hli Haykwhl Ẃii Xsgaak, Melanie Mark

    Born of Nisga’a, Gitxsan, Cree and Ojibway ancestry, HLI HAYKWHL ẂII XSGAAK, Melanie Mark, is a former Canadian politician and the first First Nations woman to be elected to the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia and serve in B.Cs Cabinet. Melanie is working on strategic plans for emerging First Nations’ lead economic and business opportunities focused on the green tech, low carbon and renewable energy business sectors.

  • Ahmed Rahim, Numi Organic Tea

    Ahmed is Co-Founder, Board Chair & Chief Alchemist behind Numi Organic Tea, one of the largest premium, organic, Fair Trade Certified tea companies in North America. Ahmed creates all of the unique Numi blends and travels the far corners of the world building partnerships with farmers.

  • Social finance panel featuring:

    Esther Park, Cienega Capital Esther is the CEO of Cienega Capital, a regenerative investment firm utilizing an integrated capital approach to systemic change in the areas of soil health, regenerative agriculture, and local food systems.

    Kristin Hull, Nia Impact Capital Kristin is a conscious investor empowering individuals, families and organizations to invest in alignment with their values, for the world they want to see. Kristin launched Nia Global Solutions in 2013 to bring activism and impact investing into the public markets.

    Dawn McGee, is the CEO of Goodworks Evergreen, Goodworks Ventures, and Goodworks Development.  As President of the High Stakes Foundation, her mandate is to provide support to visionary people and organizations that are leading and implementing changes to create a sustainable future for Montana.

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Interactive Case Studies & Business Problem Solving Sessions

At SVI we will feature three enterprises that have identified a specific strategic challenge to a panel of experts. The format of SVI is highly interactive and experiential. Participants present their business problems to a panel of experienced business leaders and fellow participants. In return, they receive advice, tools, and resources to strengthen and grow their enterprise in a socially conscious way.

SVI 2023 Case Study Presenters: 

SVI 2023 Business Problem Solving Sessions: 

  • Morẹ́nikẹ́ Ọláòṣebìkan, Kemet Group Inc
  • Want to see your venture featured? Sign up today for the opportunity to submit your strategic challenge or present your pitch at Marketplace of Ideas!
Smiley students from the SVI Hollyhock program on the ground
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Skill Building Workshops

Agile Strategy for the Social Venture with Mike Rowlands, Junxion Strategy

How do you translate ideas into impact? How do you hold to your values, while competition and opportunities try to push you off course? And how do you decide what’s most important now—compared to what you thought was important during your last planning retreat?

Today, effective strategy integrates culture and brand, embraces the change that’s all around us, and is captured in a living document that empowers leaders through change, growth, and organizational development.

In this session Mike Rowlands will share insights into Junxion’s Turning Point™ approach, which blends Agile methodologies, Appreciative Inquiry, stakeholder engagement and systems thinking in an integrated model that’s been implemented by many SVI alumni in their ventures—and a long list of visionary, social purpose organizations.

Authentic and Actionable ESG in a Social Enterprise Context with K. Alison Fraser, KAF Consulting Group

  • Why ESG and DEI are the only business objective any social enterprise should prioritize.
  • How equity is good business.
  • Explore the difference between equality and equity.
  • Shift belief systems to make decisions using Cognitive Reframing.
  • Take a pragmatic approach to build Equity into a corporate strategy’s DNA.
  • Exploration of a new ESG-centred enterprise structure.

Finding Center in Uncertain Times with Alima Ali, North Star Visioning

In an increasingly VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) world, it is common to feel fearful and become reactive. This workshop draws on timeless wisdom practices from India to help participants find and return to their center when faced with uncertainty. Participants learn practical techniques to ground themselves and align their will center with their heart center, which they can use in moments of fear or when triggered by a difficult situation. Instead of getting stuck in a reactive negative spiral, these practices help build resilience and open up intentional choices about how to respond in the moment.

The Lens of Permaculture with Amy Moroni, Long Table Grocery + Consulting

This workshop will explore how to apply Permaculture principles, ethics and systems to business as a framework to build sustainable and efficient models. Using a case study of Long Table Grocery, a small grocery store and catering company in northern BC, and drawing from permaculture best practices, learn how to simply audit your business systems in a way that helps align them into a more sustainable and efficient operation.

Messaging and Marketing Strategies for Purpose-Led Leaders & Brands with Shannon Emmerson, Forge & Spark Media

It’s not easy to deliver effective marketing you actually take pride in. The balance between expressing what’s in your heart and building your business is a tricky one to strike, and to maintain. In this session, looking at a few stellar brand examples, I’ll walk through a framework my agency has developed for crafting your brand marketing messaging, while breaking down exactly where purpose, values, positioning, story pillars, and key messages fit in your overall marketing equation. This will serve as a working session for you to create or fine-tune your messaging, whether for your brand or for yourself as a leader.

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Stress-Free Travel on the SVI Mobile!

Embrace stress-free travel by booking our all-inclusive charter package for $325, which covers transportation, ferry rides, a water taxi adventure across the Salish Sea, and a shuttle service to and from campus. Departing from downtown Vancouver on September 27th and returning on October 1st, our chartered bus, ferry, and water taxi will provide you with a scenic and hassle-free route to the Hollyhock campus. Secure your spot today by registering for SVI! Act fast, as SVI Mobile spots are limited and tend to sell out quickly.


A group of people cheering in the garden of Hollyhock, during SVI Women.

Tuition: $1200 CAD

Organizations: Contact [email protected] for special group pricing and partnership opportunities.

Additional Costs:
Campus stay rates range from $557 – $1719 and include gourmet meals, accommodations, Hollyhock activities, use of hot tubs and campus facilities; tuition is not included. Click here for details.


Hollyhock recognizes that economic opportunity is not currently equal. To this end, we offer bursaries to individuals from underrepresented communities including Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour, and people who identify as disabled, low income, and 2SLGBTQI+. Scholarships are available. Please submit an application here if financial assistance is required.

Discover Offsite Accommodations Near Hollyhock Campus!

As space at Hollyhock for SVI is filling up fast, and our on-site beds are limited, we’re excited to offer you convenient offsite accommodations in close proximity to the campus on Cortes Island. You won’t miss out on any of the SVI action, and Gigi is here to expertly coordinate your travel arrangements and offsite bookings, ensuring a seamless and comfortable stay. Don’t hesitate to secure your spot or contact [email protected] to experience the SVI magic while staying close to the heart of it all. Contact Gigi to reserve your offsite accommodations today!

Our Partners

Thank you to our community partners for helping support, uplift, and work together to eliminate barriers to equity and economic access!

Vancity logo
ICA logo
Junxion logo
Horizon Grocery Welness logo
Renewal Funds logo
45 north logo
Qi Integrated Health Logo
Stephanie Vellins - Harris logo
Guayakí Logo
Faculty Brewing Co logo

Community Amplifiers

Thank you to our community amplifiers for helping support, uplift, and work together to eliminate barriers to equity and economic access!

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