June is a significant time every year as it’s both Pride for LGBTQIA+ folks as well as National Indigenous History Month. This year, protests around the world are more loudly than ever* calling for systemic change in institutions that reinforce structural inequalities.

We cannot build an inclusive economic system without addressing the fundamental injustice, inequity, and violence that dis-proportionally affects black, indigenous, and people of colour in Canada.

Looking forward, we are diving into the difficult work of how, as a financial intermediary and investor, we can meaningfully contribute to a more just and equitable society.

To start, we are committed to investing for justice and diversity, and are proud to expand our support for indigenous entrepreneurs in our regional funds on the Sunshine Coast, Yukon, Vancouver Island, and Okanagan.

There is more work to do and we are committed to doing our part.

Confronting Canada’s Roots

As Canadians we often satiate our conscience by casting ourselves as saviors in North America’s history of slavery. But we must reconcile the truth that the economic prosperity that many of us enjoy is built on a foundation of colonization, slavery, and genocide.

Read: The Canadian Narrative About Slavery is Wrong

Investing for Economic Justice

Our history still has strong repercussions, including a stark lack of private investment into black, indigenous. and people of colour owned businesses. Being a progressive company and investor means that we must go beyond diversity and inclusion to proactively being anti-racist. At Rhiza, that means expanding our investing strategy and impact thesis to support more than just resiliency, but reconciliation.

After all, an inclusive economy is a stronger economy.

Check out: B Lab’s Anti-Racism Resources

Sustainable Development Requires Reconciliation

SDG aligned impact is inextricable from reconciliation and the collective improvement of the lives and health of indigenous people. Only by working in tandem with indigenous communities, supporting their rights, and creating economic inclusion can we make meaningful progress on the Sustainable Development Goals.

Read: The UN Sustainable Development Goals and Indigenous Peoples in Canada

*We recognize that LGBTQIA+ and black, indigenous, and people of colour communities have been calling for justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion for decades.