\ˈsōSHəl\ \ˈimˌpakt\ – a significant, positive change that addresses a pressing social challenge. Having a social impact is the result of a deliberative set of activities.
MCIS Language Solutions advocates to remove language barriers and improve access to critical information about local schools, job opportunities, civic and political rights, and access to health and legal services. Information about these vital services makes it possible for people to fully participate in civic life and for communities to remain prosperous. Our social impact strategy focuses on three key areas:
01 ADVOCACY : Increased advocacy through programs, policy and funding for access to critical information and services as a basic human right, data sharing and collaboration, and professionalization of language services provision. MCIS is continuously increasing its internal research capacity and creating partnerships to increase the ability to influence public debates and creation of policies.
The most recent examples of our work in this field are:
- – Annual allocation of free services to qualified recipients of translation and interpretation services as well as language professional training,
- – Sponsorship of newcomers’ family (2017-18),
- – Community hackathons e.g. MigrahackTO 2017 (#MigrahackTO Report, blog),
- – Language awareness and advocacy events such as MCIS’ (un)Conference (blog, Report) and International Translation Day,
- – Partnering in joint advocacy initiatives such as Digital Rights Now.
02 CAPACITY: Strengthened capacity of the professional language services field improves access to critical information and services. MCIS is an organization comprised of diverse individuals and aims to lead the language services sector through specialised training and social procurement.
03 GROWTH: The growth of the business supports programs to increase access to rights, services, safety indirectly promoting general health and well-being. Please see here how our growth is guided by our intended impact emerging from our Theory of Change.
With a growing demand for language services, a long track record of success, and deep roots in the community, MCIS is showing that there is a better way to grow business.
WHAT IT TAKES TO SETTLE A FAMILY
Over the years, MCIS’s growth from a staff of 3 in 1993 to over 60 full time employees in 2018 was supported by hiring policies that created opportunities for immigrants, newcomers and refugees. Today, 85% of MCIS staff identify themselves as 1st generation immigrants and 95% of our language professionals as well as our students are either immigrants or have parents born outside Canada. Presently, close to 5000 individuals directly associated with MCIS are able to find lucrative opportunities in the language industry while sustaining themselves and their families. As a non-profit that prides itself on being a social enterprise, MCIS believes that the humanitarian cause that inspired the organization to make the challenging but rewarding decision to sponsor a Syrian refugee family in 2017 was also economically justified, based on the lived experience of how refugees and immigrants have contributed to MCIS’s growth.
#MIGRAHACKTO, November, 2017
At #MigrahackTO, we combined data & journalism to delve into immigration issues. They will form diverse teams and use the power of data visualization to tell stories driven by data. Most journalists and community members have never attended a hackathon. Most programmers have never worked on immigration issues. Migrahack brings together diverse groups to work jointly on the issues that affect us all.
MCIS was initially created to remove language barriers for victims of domestic and sexual violence. Today, we are a comprehensive language solutions hub with the highest quality, most responsive and most cost effective services, and also provides funded services, social benefits and engages in advocacy.
MCIS’ primary commitment is to vulnerable persons and their rights to access important public services. Since its inception in 1989, MCIS has been facilitating communication in the public sector (shelters, law enforcement, healthcare and criminal justice system), continuously reframing narratives around diverse linguistic communities, especially in relation to language rights and language advocacy.
THEORY OF CHANGE
MCIS’ Theory of Change framework demonstrates how the relationships among our primary beneficiaries, stakeholders (staff, volunteers, partners, customers) as well as the strategies, activities and the outcomes we produce guide us to achieve our intended impact.