Startup Stories: Bridging Spirits for a Better World

Startup Stories: Bridging Spirits for a Better World Our Logo Says A Lot

Tell us about your product or service.
Spirit Bridge improves the lives of all people by providing affordable, collaborative services to communities and organizations. Our engagement, planning and leadership development services are delivered in a way that balances consultation with training, to ensure long-term self-sufficiency and success.

What inspired you to launch your business?
I was inspired by the potential I saw, and experienced, when working with grassroots organizations and vulnerable communities as a Federal Government Employee. Unfortunately, many programs and funding sources are focused on short-term, low impact solutions. I felt I could, if I took a hands-on, grassroots approach myself, help those communities and organizations find their strength, self-sufficiency and leave them with skills, knowledge, and expertise they could build on well into the future. I therefore voluntarily left a well-paid government job, to start Spirit Bridge.

What problem does your business or organization solve?
Spirit Bridge helps communities and organizations focus on their inner core of potential. It helps communities engage a broader range of people, reveal a broader range of experience and perspective, and take concrete, positive action from a foundation of evidence-based strength.

What has been your biggest challenge and how are you working to overcome it?
The model that I use as the foundation of all Spirit Bridge activities, which is an adaptation of the Appreciative Inquiry model of systemic change, is poorly understood and often comes off as simply a ‘power of positive thinking' concept. I am also having trouble getting over the ‘too good to be true' skepticism (as I offer free services to any community or non-profit organization in need).

I am addressing both of these challenges by starting to offer public workshops at which participants can experience first-hand the method, and the impact of our process. In doing so, each workshop results in concrete action plans addressing a variety of social issues, developed and led by the participants after the workshop. I am hoping it will be a win-win situation for everyone.

Give us one word that people might use to describe you.
Tenacious

How has Project Eve helped you and/or your business?
I have only just joined the Project Eve network, but am happy to see many stories (from which I believe we learn the most).

Give us an insider tip that relates to your industry.
Working with vulnerable communities takes time. The trust-building stage is much longer than with other clients. Be prepared for that, and be prepared to ensure that any work you do provides shared value and long-term sustainability.

Company: Spirit Bridge Consulting

Website: http://www.spiritbridge.ca

Follow my organization on social media here:
@BridgeSpirit
www.facebook.com/spiritbridgeconsulting
http://ca.linkedin.com/pub/brigitte-carolina-lewis/21/841/57a/