Study Finds that Build Up Saskatoon Reduces Harm and Fosters Growth

Build Up Saskatoon (BUS) is Quint’s construction and contracting social enterprise, founded to provide a supportive and empowering work environment for individuals who may otherwise never achieve or maintain stable employment. BUS balances diverse community-based intervention strategies with real work experience in the trades sector. The majority of our crew members have experience with the criminal justice system, often coming to us directly out of federal or provincial institutions.

In 2023, we were honoured to partner with the Canadian Centre for the Study of Co-operatives as they published a study to measure the social and economic impact of BUS, including the extent to which we successfully keep crew members from reoffending and help them to escape the cycles of poverty and addiction etc. We were very proud of the findings and we encourage you to read the reports linked below:

  1.  ‘More than a job, finally”: Lived Experiences of Build Up Saskatoon Participants – This research conducted interviews with BUS participants to explore their experiences of and outcomes from working at BUS. The researchers found that BUS’ multifaceted intervention model to address participants’ barriers to employment helped them to demolish old structures, develop occupational foundations, cultivate stable framing in their lives, and allowed them to embark on social renovations.
  2.  Working it Out: Estimating the Social Value of Build Up Saskatoon – this report found that BUS programming helped government agencies, such as the Ministry of Corrections, Policing, and Public Safety, Ministry of Social Services, and Saskatoon Police Service generate a net saving of between $126,489 to $306,666 in its first year of operation. This translates to a return on investment of $1.39 to $1.95 for every government dollar invested in BUS.
  3.  Turning up the dial on Saskatoon’s Social Procurement: A Multi-City Policy Analysis – This report compared how social value is codified in the procurement policies across Saskatoon, Calgary, Winnipeg, Vancouver, and Halifax. Through this comparison, this report identified policy mechanisms currently being used across the five cities that can help to advance social procurement.
We’d like to thank the research team and our Build Up staff and crew for the work they put into this project. We are thrilled to have external reports confirming that Build Up and similar social enterprises support healthier, more equitable communities.