Getting to Impact: Canadian Collective Impact Case Studies

Date: May 8, 2018 | 1:00 - 2:00 p.m. EDT


  • Cathy Wright
  • Carrie Tanasichuk, Living SJ
  • Colleen Christopherson-Cote, Saskatoon Poverty Reduction
  • Marisa Moher, Ottawa Child and Youth Initiative

Host: Liz Weaver, Tamarack Institute

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When Collective Impact Has an ImpactIn the second of the Getting to Impact webinar series, we will explore the lessons learned from the three Canadian Collective Impact efforts that were included in the fieldwide evaluation study:  When Collective Impact has an Impact.  Leaders from the Saskatoon Poverty Reduction Partnership; Living SJ; and Growing Up Great initiatives will share their Collective Impact experiences and what they are learning as they transform their communities.

Within each case we will also discuss the new initiatives and approaches that were explored through these efforts, along with lessons learned for those who are seeking to pilot new approaches to reducing poverty. Finally, we will discuss the evaluation report findings and how the implications for designing and executing Collective Impact efforts has informed their local community change work.  


Liz Weaver

Liz Weaver 1Liz Weaver is the Co-CEO of Tamarack Institute where she is leading the Tamarack Learning Centre. The Tamarack Learning Centre has a focus on advancing community change efforts and does this by focusing on five strategic areas including Collective Impact, collaborative leadership, community engagement, community innovation and evaluating community impact. Liz is well-known for her thought leadership on Collective Impact and is the author of several popular and academic papers on the topic. She is a co-catalyst partner with the Collective Impact Forum and leads a Collective Impact capacity building strategy with the Ontario Trillium Foundation.



Carrie Tanasichuk, Living SJCarrie Tanasichuk Headshot Square

Carrie Tanasichuk is the Director of Community Evaluation for Living SJ. She is passionate about using her expertise in research and evaluation to help organizations demonstrate impact, improve, and innovate and has worked in diverse settings, such as the non-profit sector, youth development, criminal justice, health promotion and screening, and technology. She has a Ph.D. in Applied Social Psychology from the University of Saskatchewan. 


Cathy Wright

Cathy Wright HeadshotFor the past thirteen years, Cathy Wright has been a key catalyst in the poverty reduction efforts in Saint John, New Brunswick.  Prior to moving into semi-retirement, she served as executive director of Living SJ, a dynamic network of leaders from business, government, non-profits and low income neighbourhoods, focused on ending generational poverty.  She supported the development and implementation of this growing network as it applied a Collective Impact approach to four game changing priorities – education, health, employment and neighbourhoods –  impacting the lives of individuals and families living in poverty. As both a professional and a volunteer, Cathy has contributed to changing social issues at the local, provincial and national levels.  Her work, primarily in the non-profit sector in poverty reduction, social planning, and adult literacy, is guided by the necessity of diverse partners working and learning together. Cathy is a recipient of the 2017 Vibrant Communities Canada Legacy Award and the Canada Volunteer Award.


Colleen Christohperson-Cote Headshot SquareColleen Christopherson-Cote, Saskatoon Poverty Reduction Partnership

Colleen Christopherson-Cote is the coordinator for the Saskatoon Poverty Reduction Partnership and the community co-lead for the Evaluation and Analysis working group of CFICE. She lives and works within Saskatoon, Treaty 6 territory and the homeland of the Métis. The interconnect between all three partnerships provides her with the opportunity to catalyze, convene and coordinate community-based work to drive change and build capacity around improving the lives of vulnerable people in Saskatoon. Fostering new and existing community-campus relationships is a core priority of her work, understanding that engaging community throughout research processes is integral to successfully reducing poverty. Colleen is committed to the implementation of UNDRIP and the TRC Calls to Action in both her professional and personal life, recognizing that reconciliation is essential for an equitable, just society.


Marisa Moher, Ottawa Child and Youth Initiative

Marisa Moher Headshot SquareAfter completing her Masters in Social Work in 2005, Marisa spent 4 years working in the mental health sector as an Intake and Mental Health case manager. For the past 11 years she has worked in the community health sector focusing on health promotion, community development, partnership and collective network development, and project and performance management. She is passionate about identifying and testing effective strategies to guide, direct and engage community partners and key stakeholders to work collaboratively, build consensus, develop partnerships and achieve common goals.

For the past 3 years, Marisa has acted as the Director for the Ottawa Child and Youth Initiative (OCYI), a network of over 80 organizations who have a shared commitment that children and youth reach their full potential and provides a platform that guides and influences practice, policy, and systems. She has two wonderful children with my partner of 18 years and loves spending her free time playing ultimate and downhill skiing


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