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Tapestry welcomes Chris Mohan as Investment Analyst

By News

Tapestry Community Capital is excited to welcome Chris Mohan to the team! Chris will work for the summer as an investment analyst, supporting

 various teams within Tapestry as we level up our work with affordable housing providers, share knowledge and resources about community finance widely, and much more. 

Chris’s first foray into the world of social finance was two-fold. As a student in business and engineering at Western University, Chris joined the school’s climate justice group, leading investigations into the university’s investment portfolio and greenwashing practices in its responsible investing strategy. He also interned with the LEAP | Pecaut Centre for Social Impact, supporting ventures focused on health and women’s economic resilience. “It was after that experience that I knew that I wasn’t leaving the social impact space,” Chris says.

Now, working with Tapestry as a participant in Propel Impact’s Summer Analyst program, Chris is excited to dive into community finance. “I’m really excited to be at Tapestry. I first heard about Tapestry through that YouTube video by About Here highlighting the Kensington Market Community Land Trust, and I thought that was such an exciting opportunity to actually fund community power,” Chris says. “I really think as community bonds scale, we’re going to unlock so many amazing new opportunities for us to reinvigorate not just housing and community projects, but also local democracy.”

Chris is interested in the behind-the-scenes working of community finance for another reason, too: “I do hope one day to work on nonprofit or co-housing developments for my community and for my family,” Chris shares. “With the high interest rates on mortgages, it’s just an impossible feat to actually be able to pay a mortgage lender and accumulate the down payment required…And at the same time, as an added bonus, we can move away from this more individualistic and separated lifestyle.”

When Chris isn’t working or dreaming up future housing co-ops, he enjoys reading (mostly nonfiction, but he’s open to fiction recommendations), cycling, and volunteering at a Toronto organization called Charlie’s Freewheels, where he helps teach young people about building bikes.

We hope you’ll have the opportunity to meet Chris soon. If you’d like to get in touch, you can reach him at Welcome to the team, Chris!

Tapestry Community Capital chosen as a CMHC Level-Up semi-finalist

By Affordable Housing, News

Tapestry Community Capital is proud to share that we’ve been selected as a semi-finalist in the CMHC’s Housing Supply Challenge!

What does it mean? We’ve received funding to continue our work supporting affordable housing providers across the country in raising community capital. From building new affordable, net-zero housing in Kamloops, B.C. to preserving affordable units for residents of Toronto’s quickly-gentrifying Kensington Market, the work affordable housing providers do is essential and they need better financing options.


What is the Housing Supply Challenge?

From the CMHC website

The Housing Supply Challenge invites citizens, stakeholders, and experts to propose solutions to the barriers to new housing supply. The challenge will distribute $300 million in funding over 5 years.

Successful submissions that address barriers to supply will receive funding to prototype or incubate their proposal. Following the prototype stage, a number of selected finalists will share a pool of additional funding to implement their proposed solutions.

Each round awards proposals that address housing supply barriers such as building timelines, construction productivity, and improving data on land availability.

How do community bonds support affordable housing?

Community bonds are a social finance tool that can be used by charities, non-profits and co-operatives to finance socially and environmentally impactful projects. Similar in many ways to a traditional bond, they are an interest bearing loan from an investor, which has a set rate of return and a fixed term.

For affordable housing providers, community bonds can:

  • Help fill financing gaps — for example, there aren’t many other financing paths to cover pre-development costs like buying land, having architectural plans drafted, and legal and consulting fees.
  • Build community support for more affordable housing — affordable housing providers can grow their network of supporters by offering their communities investment opportunities.
  • Contribute to local economic development — by offering returns to everyday community members rather than big banks, community bonds build community wealth, indirectly helping to end the housing crisis.

Learn more about Tapestry’s Investing in Housing program here, and about the CMHC’s Housing Supply Challenge here.

For media inquiries, contact Kylie Adair, Communications Lead at For general inquiries, get in touch with our team at

Tapestry welcomes Kylie Adair as Communications Lead

By News

Tapestry Community Capital is happy to welcome Kylie Adair to the team. As Communications Lead, Kylie will spread the word about community finance among non-profits and co-operatives across the country. 

Kylie brings a background in journalism to her work leading Tapestry’s communications. Prior to joining Tapestry, Kylie worked for three years as the editor of Future of Good, a digital publication that covers non-profit and social purpose work in Canada. Kylie has also written for the Philanthropist Journal, Corporate Knights, and more. 

“Having spent years covering non-profits and the complex social issues they work on, I’m really excited to contribute to something that shifts the systems limiting their work,” Kylie says. 

Kylie also deeply values economic justice. “Community bonds shake up capitalist power dynamics. They offer returns directly to communities, not just big organizations,” she says. “And in funding relationships, they put the power in the hands of community organizations.” 

Outside of work, Kylie loves to explore her new(ish) home of Montreal with her partner and her dog, Dot. She’s an avid fiction reader and loves cooking, baking, and tending to her balcony garden. 

We hope you’ll have the opportunity to meet Heather soon. If you’d like to get in touch, you can reach her at Welcome to the team, Kylie!

New social finance marketplace: Growcer Finance launches

By News

Did you know that about 95 percent of the fresh greens you see in the grocery store are imported from the United States? Growcer’s on a mission to change that, with their modular farms made to withstand Canada’s inhospitable weather. 

The organization’s new program, Growcer Finance, is a new marketplace filling a gap in the sustainable agriculture world — connecting socially and environmentally conscious investors to the entrepreneurs who are making a meaningful difference in communities’ food security. 

Growcer is fundraising a minimum of $10 million and maximum of $30 million for the pooled fund, from accredited investors. The fund plans to start investing this quarter in entrepreneurs using Growcer’s modular farms to grow fresh produce in areas of the country without stable and affordable access to this food. 

At Tapestry, we know first-hand that investors are ready to make the switch from traditional investments in harmful and extractive industries to investments that make a positive contribution to their communities. They just need simple, barrier-free ways to find those investments. 

Growcer’s CEO, Corey Ellis, shared four insights on this innovative new financing program, inspiring us at Tapestry — and anyone looking to finance a social purpose project. 

Investors and social entrepreneurs are searching for each other

At Tapestry, we know there are scores of investors ready to put their money where their values are. But they often lack an easy and reliable way to find sustainable, ethical investments. We see a need for a connector between larger sustainably- and ethically-minded investors and local innovators in sectors like affordable housing, arts and culture, and renewable energy.

Corey noticed something similar. 

“We noticed that there were a lot of places in Canada that were in great need of solutions like Growcer farms to produce more affordable food. Lots of places had this market ripe for disruption, to produce food locally, sell it locally, and displace imports. But we realized that some of those places have very low access to capital,” he says. “At the same time, there were a lot of impact investors who really liked what we were doing and wanted to invest their capital in solutions like this — but they didn’t all want to be farmers. Our role now is to bring those parties together.”

There are benefits beyond sustainable agriculture 

“There’s also an opportunity there to deploy capital in communities that are looking for economic development opportunities, where creating two, three, four jobs is actually pretty meaningful in a community of a few thousand people,” Corey says. 

Tapestry-supported community bonds, too, reverberate positive impact. Since many investors are residents of the community, much of the returns stay in the community — in turn, boosting the area’s economic development. 

It’s possible to convert traditionalist investors

The fact is that the status quo isn’t cutting it anymore. “Especially post-COVID, all the stakeholders in the value chain of food and grocery are trying to find more resilient ways to procure vegetables,” says Corey. “Fundamentally, there’s a big gap in the agricultural infrastructure in Canada that perhaps more conventional financing is not well suited to finance completely on their own.”

Meanwhile, investors used to traditional approaches are still resonating with Growcer’s approach. “We see a lot of family offices, high net worth and ultra-high net worth individuals. We are seeing some commercial real estate investors that are interested in infrastructure assets, because ultimately the fund looks a lot like a real estate fund, structurally speaking. So, a lot of folks who would normally deploy their capital into a real estate investment trust or some sort of other real estate fund structure” are choosing Growcer Finance. 

With Tapestry’s focus on affordable housing, we’re also keen to see investors moving money from traditional, often harmful funds like real estate investment trusts (REITs) and into community-focused investments. 

Investment readiness is key

An important role Growcer Finance plays is vetting farmers for their readiness to take on investment. What are they looking for? A solid business plan, of course, but Growcer Finance also leans toward a character-based lending approach. “We’re looking for the right attributes and evidence of past successes. Have you built a business or run a business before that has found some success, or have you been an intrapreneur and can you speak to how those skills are transferable?” Corey says. “And for the people who aren’t selected in a particular cohort, there are oftentimes opportunities for us to give feedback, the things they can do to improve and strengthen their application for next time. For those people who may not get a ‘yes’ the first time around, if they put in the work, and six months later we hear from them again, we’re going to feel better about their application.” 

Investment readiness is an important part of Tapestry’s work, too. We help organizations determine whether they’re ready to take on community bond investment, and support them as they prepare for a raise. Curious about whether your organization might be ready for a community bond campaign? Take our Qualifier quiz or get in touch with our team to learn more. 

Tapestry welcomes Heather Watt-Kapitain as Campaign Manager

By News

Tapestry Community Capital is happy to welcome Heather Watt-Kapitain to the team. As Campaign Manager, Heather will support community bond issuers through all stages of the bond lifecycle, from the earliest feasibility stages all the way to reinvestment campaigns. 

Heather brings with her many years of experience in project management, entrepreneurship, stakeholder engagement, facilitation, and community finance. In 2016, when she was chair of the board of 10C, a coworking space in Downtown Guelph, Ontario, she supported the campaign to purchase and renovate a 15,000 square foot building — and raise $2.5 million for it through community bonds. 

In 2021, Heather left the board for a staff role at 10C where she joined the Harvest Impact team, a character-based lender powering social enterprises and regenerative farmers working toward a circular economy. 

Heather’s looking forward to bringing all of this experience to Tapestry’s clients — and in doing so, “shifting status quo, shifting mindsets, getting people to see the possibility and the opportunity in social finance,” she says. “In a time where there can

be general feelings of hopelessness, community bonds give people an opportunity to take action and support effective change.”

Outside of work, Heather has a busy home life with three kids and three dogs. She loves to read and spend time in the woods in Guelph, where she lives. “The entire Tapestry team knows that my son and I have this cold plunge challenge that we’ve been doing for the last 10 weeks,” she adds with a laugh, “so I like taking on absurd things like that.”

We hope you’ll have the opportunity to meet Heather soon. If you’d like to get in touch, you can reach her at Welcome to the team, Heather! 

Tapestry welcomes investment associate Ashley McFarlane to the team

By News

Tapestry Community Capital is happy to welcome Ashley McFarlane to the team. As investment associate, Ashley will support Tapestry’s clients, making sure they have all the documents ready and systems in place to raise community bond investments and repay their investors. 

Before coming to Tapestry, Ashley worked in banking, having graduated from Carleton University’s Sprott School of Business in 2020. At the Bank of Montreal, Ashley loved being client-facing, and it sparked her interest in investment. Meanwhile, an activist friend sent her the posting for Tapestry’s investment associate opening, and she was pleasantly “shocked,” she says, to discover the world of community investment. 

“These are people who are actually trying to help their communities,” she says. “It’s still financial services, but they are trying to do something bigger. I feel good about the job I’m doing.”

Ashley found her way to the world of social finance in her own time, but thinks business schools should put more focus on this work. Her program had a few classes on corporate social responsibility, but she says they could be doing much more to introduce students to ethical and sustainable investment. “They’re going to be the next leaders in the business world. How are you going to push them to think outside of the box?” 

Ashley also appreciates Tapestry’s focus on affordable housing, living in Hamilton, Ontario, one of Canada’s most expensive cities. She’s seen friends experience renovictions and neighbourhood storefront institutions become condo developments. Tapestry’s work supporting community land trusts and affordable housing providers “spoke to me,” Ashley says. 

Ashley’s currently working on her Canadian Securities Course. Outside of work and class, she loves to read — ”I can read a 300-page book in a day!” — stay active in the gym and outdoors, and travel, especially to see family in Miami and the Cayman Islands, and to experience the cultures of other countries. 

We hope you’ll have the opportunity to connect and work with Ashley. If you’d like to get in touch, you can reach her at Welcome to the team, Ashley! 



Marina Eckersley joins the Tapestry Team

By News

Tapestry is thrilled to welcome Marina Eckersley as our newest member of the Campaigns Team. As Campaign Coordinator, Marina will support social purpose organizations to engage their communities, communicate their investment opportunities, and reach their investment targets. With a diverse background in sales and marketing, and a passion for project management, she hopes to contribute to the growth and awareness of the community bond model across Canada. 

“I’ve been called the queen of structured fun,” says Marina. “I think the name fits because I am hyper organized, love a good excel spreadsheet, and keep everyone on track in order to ensure they are having a great time.” We are sure that Marina is going to bring this same spirit and energy to her work with Tapestry clients. 

Marina’s career has led her from the music industry, to journalism and politics. Most recently she traveled across the province as the Events and Tour Coordinator for Mike Schreiner and the Green Party of Ontario. Marina was drawn to the work that Tapestry does because she saw it as an avenue to apply her skills to do good in the world. “Working in the music industry, I often felt jaded. I thought I was going to be helping artists get their music out to the world when in reality, I was trying to squeeze every penny from them.” 

She is also excited about the opportunity to not just plan for change, but to actually put plans into action. “I see community bonds as a way to use the system, to fight the system,” says Marina. “It can be exhausting talking about what we should do and never getting to the point of implementation – this is a chance to actually do it.” 

“As cliché as it may sound, I want to leave the world a better place,” says Marina. The good news is that at Tapestry, we don’t think it’s cliché at all – it’s central to everything we do. We know community bonds are a flexible tool for non-profits and co-operatives to access the capital they need to do more good, and they are also an instrument that can keep wealth within communities. 

In Marina’s spare time she is a baker and avid knitter. In fact, she once auditioned for the Great Canadian Baking Show and her love for knitting once led her to uncover the hidden truths behind Ontario’s wool industry! Check out the fascinating article here

We hope you will have the opportunity to meet and work with Marina. If you are interested in connecting with her, please reach out by email at


The Power of Co-operation

By News

This week is Co-op Week, a time to celebrate the impact that the co-operative sector has had on communities across Canada, and reflect on co-operative values and principles.

So, what exactly is a co-op?

Co-operatives are people-centered enterprises that are owned and controlled by and for their members to bring about common economic, social, and/or cultural goals. Co-operatives bring people together in a democratic and equitable way, following the ‘one member, one vote’ principle. 

As a co-operative organization ourselves, and one that supports other co-operatives to raise community investment, we firmly believe in the benefits that co-operatives bring to society. Because they are not owned by shareholders, co-ops are a vehicle that allow people to take control of their economic future and retain economic and social benefits within their communities. 

More broadly than this, we believe in co-operation – co-operation among community members, among community organizations, among sectors – to create a better future. Co-operation is at the core of what we do, and the essence of community financing. We know that doing things together yields far better results than when done alone. 

To mark the occasion of Co-op Week, our team has been reflecting on this years’ theme: “Co-operation in the World of Tomorrow”. 

Mary Warner, Co-Executive Director 

Mary Warner“I believe in a future where profits are returned to supporters rather than banks, and where investors can feel proud that they put their money in something that they believe in. To me, ‘co-operation in the world of tomorrow’ means communities coming together to support a common goal and jointly investing the capital it will take to realize that vision.”

Satyameet Singh, Campaign Manager

Satyameet Singh“A Co-operative offers it’s members a concrete way to contribute to our inter-dependent reality; one where bridges replace walls. At Tapestry, when I see a cool Co-operative in action – one with shameless idealism and a strong collective resolve – I feel alive.” 

Karen Scottie, Human Resources and Administration Manager 

Headshot“I imagine a world where problems, such as climate change, homelessness and poverty, are not shrugged off due to profit’s bottom line. I see inclusive communities whose inhabitants, both human and non-human, flourish with home-fullness, vibrant public and active transportation, and an economy based on the health of the planet. One step toward this vision is if community members could raise their own funds for their projects, to be the investors themselves. Community bonds make this possible.”

Tapestry receives CMHC support to mobilize investment in affordable housing

By Affordable Housing, News

Tapestry Community Capital has been selected as a winner of the Canadian Housing and Mortgage Corporation (CMHC) Housing Supply Challenge to scale up community investment in the affordable housing sector. 

“We are incredibly excited to have the support of CMHC,” says Ryan Collins-Swartz, Co-Executive Director of Tapestry. “With this funding, we will help affordable housing providers to tap into a new source of capital, enable more projects to get off the ground, and increase the supply of affordable housing in Canada.”  

Community bonds are a social finance tool used by nonprofits, charities and co-ops to finance capital projects with impact. Similar to traditional bonds, they are interest bearing loans. The key difference – they provide investors with both a financial and social return. 

While unlocking private capital, community bonds also build a powerful sense of community ownership. Residents, local businesses, and institutions alike can all invest to improve their community, while earning a fair return. Organizations such as Brique par Brique in Montreal, QC and The Mount in Peterborough, ON have successfully utilized community bonds to finance the construction of affordable housing. 

“We have witnessed the power of community bonds to garner community support for projects,” says Mary Warner, Co-Executive Director at Tapestry. “When someone becomes an investor, they are not only becoming financially invested but also emotionally invested in the outcome of the project. For a sector that is often afflicted by NIMBYism, this support is critical.” 

Tapestry is working with multiple partners to support program implementation. Key to the solution are a series of demonstration projects that will utilize and showcase the community bond model. Cumulatively, these projects will leverage $40 million in community investment, financing over 2000 affordable housing units. 

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Tapestry to build a long term, sustainable, and value aligned funding source for our organizations to acquire and preserve affordable housing,” says Chiyi Tam, Executive Director of the Kensington Market Community Land Trust. “We are eager to forge a path forward, demonstrate the community bond model, and support other like minded organizations to follow in our footsteps.” 

The solution also focuses on increasing the participation of retail and institutional investors in affordable housing. By raising awareness among investors and streamlining the process to invest in community bonds, Tapestry will grow the community investment marketplace tenfold. 

“We know there is very strong interest among investors to support affordable housing projects and Tapestry is creating the pathway to make that a reality across communities” says Mritunjay (MJ) Sinha, Tapestry Board Member and responsible and impact investment advisor. 

The program launched in early October and will run until March 2024. For more information about the upcoming events and support for community financing, sign up to The Thread newsletter here.

Photo credit: Cathy Crowe

About Tapestry Community Capital

Tapestry Community Capital is Canada’s leading non-profit service provider for community bonds. For the last decade, Tapestry has been supporting social purpose organizations across Canada to assess, structure, and manage community investments. Tapestry has supported in raising over $100 million from over 4,000 community investors.

For media inquiries, please contact Stephanie Pinnington at

About the Housing Supply Challenge 

The Housing Supply Challenge is an innovative competition that encourages interested parties from across the country to propose creative solutions to Canada’s housing crisis. The goal: to help meet Canada’s pressing need for safe and affordable homes by breaking down barriers to the creation of new supply.

Tapestry participated in Round 2 of the program, Getting Started, which seeks to find solutions to pre-development challenges, such as community resistance and obtaining financing. The program granted incubation funding to 29 organizations to allow them to further develop and test their solution proposal. After six months of research and consultation, Tapestry submitted a final solution funding proposal – “Financing Affordable Housing with the Power of Community”. Tapestry is one of 14 organizations selected for funding and will share a pool of $38 million to implement their solutions. 

Working with Tapestry

By News

For the past 5 months, the Tapestry team has had the pleasure of working with Suzanne Faiza. Suzanne, joined our team as a Researcher, supporting Tapestry’s involvement in the CMHC Housing Supply Challenge, as well as a clean energy project in Atlantic Canada. 

This fall Suzanne will be returning to her Masters of Planning program at the University of Toronto, equipped with new experience and expertise in social finance and community economic development. 

Suzanne, who originally trained and worked as an architect, contributed a wealth of understanding of the affordable housing sector to our growing team. Beyond her knowledge, she brought incredible enthusiasm and excitement to every aspect of work she engaged in. 

“Working on the Housing Supply Challenge was an incredible experience,” she shares, “It gave me an amazing opportunity to understand the affordable housing landscape in Ontario, learn first hand from those actively trying to solve what is one of our country’s greatest challenges, and see the role that social finance can play in increasing Canada’s affordable housing supply.” 

One of Suzanne’s key responsibilities was coordinating and leading stakeholder research. Engaging with co-ops, government bodies, non-profits, and investors, Suzanne always came prepared with creative questions and eagerness to learn from those we consulted with. 

“Attempting to find out what people need is really the bread and butter of being a planner, so it was great to put my facilitation skills to use.”

Contributing to a clean energy project was something new and exciting for Suzanne.

“I’ll be honest, at the beginning it was a little daunting for me because I had to play catch up and learn so many new terms and acronyms!” Suzanne admits. “I really appreciated that the team gave me the opportunity to just absorb information when I needed to,” she said, “In our housing work, I was building off previous experience, but in our clean energy project, a lot of it was completely new to me, so it was very rewarding.”

Reflecting on her experience with the Tapestry team, Suzanne shared that she appreciated the lack of hierarchy in sharing and contributing ideas, the strong commitment of the organization to work-life balance, and the support which she received to grow in her role. 

“Easily the best place I’ve ever worked at!” Suzanne concludes with a big smile. 

We are eager to see where Suzanne’s next year of her Masters program takes her and know that we will be collaborating again in the near future! 

Are you interested in social finance and the work that we do at Tapestry? Keep an eye on our Careers page for new opportunities and sign up to our newsletter for the most current updates on open positions.