In­for­ma­tion work­shop high­lights op­por­tu­ni­ties avail­able for aspir­ing Metis en­trepreneurs and busi­ness own­ers

Moose Jaw - - News -

The Clarence Cam­peau De­vel­op­ment Fund (CCDF) and the New South­ern Plains Metis Com­mu­nity 160 hosted an in­for­ma­tion work­shop at Mo­saic Place last week to out­line pro­grams and fund­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for Metis in­di­vid­u­als look­ing to start a busi­ness. Four or­ga­ni­za­tions shared valu­able in­for­ma­tion to pro­vide as­sis­tance for the Metis com­mu­nity. Whether it is help­ing them to ac­cess low in­ter­est loans to es­tab­lish a busi­ness or op­por­tu­ni­ties avail­able to fur­ther ed­u­ca­tion, the or­ga­ni­za­tions gave in-depth pre­sen­ta­tions on a va­ri­ety of op­por­tu­ni­ties and re­sources avail­able. The four or­ga­ni­za­tions that pre­sented were: the Clarence Cam­peau De­vel­op­ment Fund (CCDF), Sask. Metis Eco­nomic De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion, GDI—Path­ways for En­trepreneur­ship and Com­mu­nity Fu­tures South Cen­tral.

Tyler Morin, from the Clarence Cam­peau De­vel­op­ment Fund, is re­spon­si­ble for the south­ern Saskatchewan area and says it was es­sen­tial to host this type of work­shop in or­der to in­crease aware­ness in the Metis com­mu­nity about the wealth of op­por­tu­ni­ties avail­able for them. “It was very im­por­tant to bring this kind of work­shop to Moose Jaw. Any­time we can get the word out, it is al­ways good. We’re a Saskatchewan op­er­ated com­pany through the gov­ern­ment and we want to spread the aware­ness any­time we can do that. We strive on spread­ing aware­ness on Metis busi­ness and when we have these op­por­tu­ni­ties, we get to raise more aware­ness in the com­mu­nity about the pro­grams we of­fer. There’s quite a pop­u­la­tion of Metis peo­ple in Moose Jaw so we’re ex­cited to bring this aware­ness of how we can as­sist them if they would like to start a busi­ness.”

He says the Clarence Cam­peau De­vel­op­ment Fund helps busi­nesses from the ground up; busi­ness plans, fund­ing and much more! “As long as there’s a Metis com­po­nent to any busi­ness that some­one would like to start, we as­sist with those projects. If in­di­vid­u­als want to find out more about what we of­fer, they can al­ways check out our web­site at www.clarence­cam­ or call our Regina of­fice. We ap­pre­ci­ate the turn out from Moose Jaw and we want to con­tinue spread­ing the word and grow­ing the fund. We had a record year last year and we’re hop­ing to keep that go­ing for­ward. Last year, we put out about $4.5 mil­lion for roughly 45 projects. We’re on pace for that this year again and do­ing things like this will keep grow­ing the fund and help­ing Metis peo­ple out there. Get in touch with us to see how we can help your projects.” Lav­erne Trudel, pres­i­dent of the New South­ern Plains Metis Com­mu­nity 160, says there are lots of re­sources and op­por­tu­ni­ties for Metis peo­ple to ac­cess. “We’re try­ing to reach out more into the com­mu­nity to get more Metis in­volved with what’s out there for them if they’re look­ing to start a busi­ness. We want them to know that there are re­sources avail­able like fund­ing with very low in­ter­ests. We want to also get the young Metis peo­ple in­volved in en­trepreneur­ship, so we wanted them to be aware of all the re­sources and pro­grams avail­able to help them,” he said. “The last cen­sus showed that there are about 1500 Metis peo­ple liv­ing in Moose Jaw and sur­round­ing area. A lot of peo­ple don’t re­al­ize that there is lots of op­por­tu­ni­ties and fund­ing for Metis peo­ple to start a busi­ness or con­tinue their ed­u­ca­tion. These fa­cil­i­ta­tors can all help through the pro­grams they of­fer. We hope this in­for­ma­tion will get in­di­vid­u­als started in a suc­cess­ful busi­ness.”

Some of the guests in at­ten­dance said the in­for­ma­tion was very use­ful. Lavonne Cobb says she is plan­ning on start­ing a busi­ness and the in­for­ma­tion she re­ceived was valu­able. “I got quite a bit of in­for­ma­tion out of this meet­ing. I didn’t know that there was so much fund­ing avail­able, es­pe­cially for women. The in­for­ma­tion def­i­nitely got me on the right foot to start a busi­ness.”

Cauy Cobb, a col­lege stu­dent, shared sim­i­lar sen­ti­ments. “The in­for­ma­tion was very in­sight­ful. I’m a col­lege stu­dent and I’m not re­ally look­ing to start a busi­ness right now but I’m happy to know the op­por­tu­ni­ties that are avail­able for me for the fu­ture. It is great that there is so much avail­able for us if we de­cide to start a busi­ness, as well as fund­ing for other things like ed­u­ca­tion.”

The New South­ern Plains Metis Com­mu­nity 160 meets on the last Sun­day ev­ery month at 310 Main St N in the Ham­mond Build­ing. They will also have their an­nual gen­eral meet­ing on Septem­ber 30 at the next meet­ing.

“There’s quite a pop­u­la­tion of Metis peo­ple in Moose Jaw so we’re ex­cited to bring this aware­ness of how we can as­sist them if they would like to start a busi­ness.” -Tyler Morin

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