Spiritual organizations are the ‘commons’. These are the places where people have gathered for literally millennium. They have gathered for worship. But they have also gathered around food, for activities, for raising children, for helping the marginalized, for community.
This includes and is not exclusive to churches, temples, mosques, synagogues and parishes. If you have a place of worship, you are a spiritual organization.
Why are spiritual organizations great places for Community Innovation Hubs? We would argue that spiritual organizations have been Community Innovation Hubs for years!
Exhibit A: Healthcare in Canada which has been toted as one of the most progressive and inclusive healthcare programs in the world was originally sponsored by communities of faith. Why else do you think that so many hospitals are called St Joseph, St Michael, and many others.
Exhibit B: Operation Sharing is a non-profit founded by a community of faith that was created in Woodstock ON in order to combat food poverty. They took the food bank model and pushed it further. Who is better to partner with to combat food poverty than a grocery store? So Operation Sharing did just that and has money from all sales of the grocery stores in Woodstock being donated to alleviate food poverty. And they are not finished, they continue to fund innovation in food poverty work and have shared their learnings with others across the country.