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WEBINAR | An Innovative Model for Social Entrepreneurship: Skwachàys Lodge Aboriginal Hotel and Gallery

Wednesday, 9 December 2015 from 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM (EST)

WEBINAR | An Innovative Model for Social...

Registration Information

Registration Type Sales End Price Fee GST/HST Quantity
Live Webinar Registration Ended $30.00 $0.00 $3.90
Group Webinar Registration
Best value for groups of 3 or more wishing to watch this webinar together! This group rate allows you to watch as a group and guarantees a minimum savings of $15!
Ended $75.00 $0.00 $9.75

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Event Details

A Creative Placemaking Webinar with Artscape

An Innovative Model for Social Entrepreneurship: Skwachàys Lodge Aboriginal Hotel and Gallery

Wednesday, December 9th at 1pm Eastern (10am Pacific, 2pm Atlantic)

Featured Speaker
David Eddy, CEO of the Vancouver Native Housing Society (VNHS), Vancouver, BC

Pru Robey, Vice President and Director, Creative Placemaking Lab, Artscape, Toronto

Live Webinar Description

Opened in 2012, Skwachàys Lodge is located at the crossroads of Vancouver’s historic Gastown, Chinatown and Railtown districts in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside (DTES). Part hotel, part gallery, part social housing complex the Skwachàys business model allows 100% of the profits to flow directly to VNHS. In addition to being a hotel and fair trade Aboriginal art gallery, it operates a native artist in residence program and houses subsidized apartments for First Nations people at risk of homelessness.

This social enterprise model reduces VNHS’s dependence on government subsidies and private donations while enabling it to continue its mandate of providing safe, secure and affordable housing to Vancouver’s urban Aboriginal population. This webinar will provide insight and learnings on developing an innovative social enterprise model and leveraging assets to deliver positive community impacts and unique experiences rooted in cultural heritage.

You Will Learn

  • About the vision and development of Skwachàys Lodge
  • How to leverage a real estate asset for a social purpose
  • How to pinpoint a unique strength in your community and how to build a creative social enterprise around it
  • About the challenges and opportunities that were faced in developing this model
  • About working with partners to bring your social enterprise to life

About the Speakers

David Eddy became the Chief Executive Officer of Vancouver Native Housing Society (VNHS), a non-profit, off-reserve, Aboriginal housing provider in Vancouver, Canada, in January 2001.

Under David’s leadership over the last seven years, VNHS has increased its portfolio by nearly 100% and broadened its mandate from strictly housing urban Aboriginal families and seniors to providing supportive housing for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal homeless people and those at risk of homelessness, as well as housing for youth and for women leaving abusive/violent situations.

Since June, 2012 David has taken VNHS in a new direction of entrepreneurialism and self-sustainability, creating two social enterprises which have received international media attention and acclaim. With the introduction of Skwachàys Lodge ( and the Urban Aboriginal Fair Trade Gallery (, the society is guiding new projects to focus on Aboriginal art and culture as a means of revitalizing community pride and leading transformative change, and while doing this providing subsidy for 24 Aboriginal artists to live in the community.

David sits on the Board of Directors of Canadian Housing and Renewal Association (CHRA) and served as its president from 2008 to 2010. He previously served on the Board of the British Columbia Non-Profit Housing Association as a director and as secretary on its executive. He is a founding director of the Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Executive Council (MVAEC) and currently sits on its Housing and Homelessness Table. In 2014, Dave was asked to join the Vancouver Mayor’s Task Force on Mental Health and Addictions.

Prior to his work with VNHS, David worked for 16 years in social and affordable housing with a particular focus on marginalized groups and communities on the east side of Vancouver.

He has a Master’s degree in Leadership and Training from Royal Roads University in Victoria, BC. A father of a grown son, David delights in his role as grandpa to his three young grandchildren.

Visit Skwachàys Lodge Aboriginal Hotel and Gallery online at
Visit the Vancouver Native Housing Society online at

Pru Robey is a passionate advocate for the transformative impact the arts and culture have on the lives of individuals and communities. Throughout her career, the development of innovative, multi-sector approaches to support cultural sector development, creative economy activation and sustainable urban regeneration has been a centerpiece of her work. Pru has over 30 years of experience as a consultant, researcher, manager, promoter and funder in the arts, culture and creative industries in Canada and the UK. As Vice President and Creative Placemaking Lab Director at Toronto-based Artscape, Pru takes the lead in new project research and development and on major research initiatives; directs a suite of programs and services designed to build the capacity of communities internationally to undertake creative placemaking; and advises communities internationally on strategies to support city-building through the arts. She designed and teaches Canada’s only undergraduate course in Creative Placemaking for the University of British Columbia and is a member of the Placemaking Leadership Council.

Visit Artscape online at and

Thank you to our Promotional Partners



We have several staff members who would like to attend; does each person need to register?
Yes, pricing is per person. If you would like multiple staff to attend please register each individual. Creative Placemaking Webinars are a part of Artscape's knowledge sharing activities. We run the webinars on a cost-recovery basis and each registration supports the work we do as a not-for-profit organization that makes space for creativity and transforms communities.

Where can I contact the organizer with any questions?
Please contact Melissa Routley, Program Manager:

I can no longer attend; can I get a refund for my registration?
All registration sales are final. Your registration may be transferred by contacting the organizer with a minimum of 3 business days in advance of the event.

Photo Credit: Skwachàys Lodge Aboriginal Hotel and Gallery, Craig Minielly/Aura Photographics

Have questions about WEBINAR | An Innovative Model for Social Entrepreneurship: Skwachàys Lodge Aboriginal Hotel and Gallery? Contact the organizer

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