Community Futures is proud to be a partner with JCI Kelowna in awarding a local entrepreneur $5000 to help support and grow their business. This bursary money is rasied through the Rene Bourgault Legacy Golf Tournament, an event held annually in memory of Rene. This year's recipient is Martin Rivard of Vegilante Plant Based Foods, a local company that makes tempeh, a high protein, plant based, fermented food. Martin faced a number of challenges during start up, but pushed through and recently launched his business! Look for him and his tempeh at the local farmer's markets. Congratulations Martin and Vegilante!
PRE Labs has recently been awarded a contract for the Canadian Government to develop a modular hard body armour system, which will be utilized by Canadian Federal Law Enforcement and Military agencies. This innovative design will provide security forces the ability to tailor the protection levels of their hard body armour plates. The base plate design will weigh less than three pounds and protect against NIJ Level III threats. Secondary plates can then be attached to the base plate to increase the protection levels to III+ - to protect against 5.56 armour piercing rounds - and level IV which will protect the user from 7.62 armour piercing rounds.
Brad Field, the Company's CEO states " Our Team of skilled individuals are honoured to participate in this program and we look forward to developing a system, which will keep our Military and Law Enforcement professionals safe."
The 2018 iGen finalists had an opportunity to do a live pitch to judges on Thursday, June 7. Congratulations to the senior winner Outsource Tutors, and the junior winner Oyster Barrow! The iGen challenge is for grade 7-12 students that want exposure to mentors and learning in innovative sectors of our local economy.
The students gain access to mentors from the local businesses to help them find innovative solutions to real world problems (UN Sustainability Goals).
Students were guided through a start up process to create companies and pitch their ideas to members of the innovation ecosystem in Kelowna. Many young entrepreneurial minds in Central Okanagan Public Schools need coaching, mentorship and opportunity to innovate. The iGen challenge has been created to meet this need.
WHY: The SBIE will feature a tradeshow which will give you the opportunity to speak face-to-face with experts from 20 plus support programs who provide valuable resources to small businesses. Interested in learning about how government support programs can help your business and your clients? Please join us!
In addition to the tradeshow portion of the Expo, you will have the chance to attend two free educational panel sessions!
- Selling to Government (11:00am – 12:00pm): Interested in selling to the public sector? This panel brings together purchasing specialists from different levels of government who will help you understand the processes for government contracting.
- Access to Financing (12:45pm – 1:45pm): Looking for sources of capital? Want us to show you the money? This panel will bring together government representatives who will provide you with information on various financing (loans & grants) programs and resources available to your business.
- Innovation: (2:30 - 3:30) short presentations from programs which support R&D of innovative goods and services, featured programs include; Build in Canada Innovation Program (BCIP), Mitacs, UBC Okanagan Survive and Thrive Applied Research (STAR) and Accelerate Okanagan.
**Please note that seating at the panel sessions are limited, and on a first-come, first-serve basis.**
To live in such a vibrant community is a gift. Being chosen as one of the 6 finalists to pitch at ChangeUp along side many other amazing socially enterprises was an honour. And winning Judges Choice and the Crowd Pleaser awards made me speechless... For a few days at least I didn't know what to say. Today I break the silence to say "Thank You" from our team here at Start Fresh.
Thank you to Purppl, Valley First and everyone who helped plan and fund the event. One-Big-Table who catered the event, and all of the people who attended. We are excited to have a six month contract with Purppl: the social enterprise incubator and have some attention do detail with our financial from KPMG.
The Okanagan is a place I've come to love. The people in this community have heart. They want to see everyone treated with dignity and respect, feel like they belong, and have access to meaningful employment and healthy food. That is what we are all about at Start Fresh and it's inspiring to hear everyones stories and the work they are going in the community.