For CFCR's April Edition of Friends of CFCR, we are very happy to introduce Quint and their program Build Up Saskatoon

Quint is a unique not for profit that works to strengthen the economic and social well-being of Saskatoon’s five core neighbourhoods through a community economic development approach. 

Quint has been around since 1995, and was a grassroots initiative from residents and community associations in Saskatoon’s core neighbourhoods who were struggling with poverty and marginalization and wanted to take control of the economic and social agenda in their communities. The name Quint is latin for 5 and represents the 5 community associations coming together


What programs does Quint Development offer? 

Quint works in the area of affordable housing, operating 94 affordable rental units and two transition homes. Quint also has an employment and training program as well as developing social enterprises, including Build Up Saskatoon.

What type of program is Build Up Saskatoon?

Build Up Saskatoon is a construction-focused social enterprise that provides an opportunity for people who face barriers to mainstream employment. Build up offers employment, training, mentorship and other supports to crewmembers that act as a bridge toward achieving meaningful long-term employment. The program seeks to support people in stabilizing their lives so they can more effectively pursue their life goals, personal, educational or professional. 

What types of services does Build Up Saskatoon offer to customers?

Build Up Saskatoon is a construction contracting business with a social purpose. We offer industry-standard residential and light commercial construction services, including interior and exterior renovation projects.

What type of supports does Build Up Saskatoon provide to crew members?

Supports offered to crewmembers can range from obtaining a driver’s license, securing government ID, finding housing, resume building, being an employment reference, construction ticketing and certification as well as emotional and spiritual support. We also offer a work environment that is designed to be welcoming, free from judgement and focused on positive growth.

How have you seen Build Up’s work make a difference?

Through the program, we have supported a variety of people who may not have otherwise been given a chance.  As folks begin to find stability in their lives and competency through skill training, we are able to watch crewmembers grow in their confidence and their outlook - building bonds, gaining trust, and feeling genuinely valued as people and as crewmates.

Additionally, as a not-for-profit venture, we are able to provide construction services to members of Saskatoon’s core community whose needs and whose budgets are often too small to be of interest to larger construction companies.  Any revenue Build Up generates through its projects is then reinvested in its program and its crew.

What is something that you wish more people knew about Build Up Saskatoon?

That we work with people who largely come from backgrounds of poverty, and intergenerational trauma and mental health challenges, but these are people who are looking for a chance to do right for themselves, their families and their community. With the right supports, willingness and determination, people can move through and beyond many of the barriers in their lives to pursue their goals, and hopefully build a better future for themselves and their families.

How can the community help your organization reach its goals?

We hope the community will see value in what we do, as well as who we employ.  Since Build Up relies on work opportunities to generate the revenue that will help keep the program sustainable, we hope the community would consider working with Build Up Saskatoon to meet their needs.  We hope our clients see that working with Build Up is about more than getting their renovation project completed – their project is providing an opportunity for folks to get back on their feet, build their skills and, ultimately, help contribute to a safer, stronger community.

Supporting social procurement policies at all levels of government.

What about fundraising or donating opportunities?

The best way to support Build Up Saskatoon is to hire them for your home renovation projects, as well as telling your friends, family and colleagues about us.

Build Up Saskatoon is based on the idea of offering a hand up, not a hand out. We are determined to demonstrate our value through the projects we complete and the work we do, while also acknowledging that we can’t go it alone.  We are deeply appreciative of the support we receive from our public and private community partners, and we are committed to continual investment in the future of our crew as well as people looking for an opportunity to make a change.

For more information about Quint Development, Build Up Saskatoon, and the work they do, click below!