Gabriel Dumont Institue

Pathways for Entrepreneurship

The Gabriel Dumont Institute is proud to announce Pathways for Entrepreneurship, principally funded through Western Economic Diversification Canada. The Pathways for Entrepreneurship initiative provides unique supports to Métis entrepreneurs who are looking to create, maintain, or expand a business. The overall goal is to increase Métis entrepreneurship and economic growth in Saskatchewan.

 

How to Get Started?
Please complete an Initial Application Form (Available here) and Personal Financial Statement (Available Here) and send to entrepreneurship@gdins.org. Feel free to contact us at 1-877-488-6888 or entrepreneurship@gdins.org if you have any questions about supports or if you would like to learn about upcoming information sessions.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Be a Métis person
  • Be a Saskatchewan Resident
  • Have barriers to self-employment or business development
  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Meet eligibility and screening requirements for approval

Ineligible businesses:

  • Direct alcohol, tobacco, or cannabis production or sales
  • Games of chance: casinos, etc.
  • Sexually explicit services and products
  • Pawnshops, cheque cashers, refinancers
  • Passive investments
  • Basic farming and ranching
  • Political bodies

What are the support areas?
Applicable supports will depend on the stage of business you are at, if you have passed screening criteria, and if you have completed a professional business plan through the Clarence Campeau Development Fund (CCDF) or SaskMétis Economic Development Corporation (SMEDCO).

All interested applicants will have access to non-funded supports such as:

  • Pathways for Entrepreneurship Workbook: learn the basics about entrepreneurship, budgeting, market research, business planning, analyzing market trends, competitor analysis, and developing a competitive advantage
  • Pathways for Entrepreneurship Map: highlights key steps in the business start-up journey and highlights areas of support
  • Workshops: GDI will host entrepreneurship workshops, financial literacy training, marketing training, etc.

Funded Supports:
Applicants that have passed initial screening may have access to the following funded supports. Funded supports with an * require the completion of a professional business plan prior to accessing.

 

Are you interested in taking training related to entrepreneurship, marketing, bookkeeping, or other areas to develop or grow your business? GDI may assist in funding tuition, books, and other costs associated with training. A living allowance may be applicable when attending training.

  • GDI may fund 100% of total tuition costs up to a maximum of $10,000 per client, per year. Clients must be intending to start their own business or be a business owner (partial Métis business owners are eligible). Employees are not eligible.
  • Maximum length of client training program is 1 year (52 weeks). There is no minimum length of training program.

Are you a Journeyperson in a trade designated in Saskatchewan? Are you looking to take your training further to gain a Blue Seal Designation from the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission (SATCC)? GDI can assist in funding tuition and book costs associated with this training.

  • Clients must provide a copy of their journeyperson certificate in a trade designated in Saskatchewan.
  • To complete the requirements for Blue Seal Certification, clients must complete 150 hours of study in approved courses. GDI will support journeypersons to complete the six (30 hours each) online Blue Seal courses supplied by Saskatchewan Polytechnic.

Are you a current business owner looking to attend non-business-related training to help expand your business? For example, a dance studio owner may want to take training to learn a new dance routine and expand services. GDI may assist in funding tuition, books, and other costs associated with training on a case-by-case basis. A living allowance may be applicable when attending training.

  • GDI may fund 100% of total tuition costs up to a maximum of $10,000 per client per year. Clients must be a current business owner (partial Métis business owners are eligible). Employees are not eligible.
  • A copy of a professionally completed business plan must be submitted to access non-business-related training.
  • Maximum length of client training program is 1 year (52 weeks). There is no minimum length of training program.

Have you developed a professional business plan through the Clarence Campeau Development Fund or SaskMétis Economic Development Corporation? These project partners may cover up to 75% of business plan costs up to a maximum total project cost of $10,000. GDI may be able to reimburse client contributions to the business plan cost upon completion (up to 25% of business plan costs at a maximum of total project cost of $10,000).

  • Clients must submit a copy of the completed business plan along with receipt of payment to the business planning consultant

Undercapitalization is a common problem for new businesses and start-ups, as positive cash flows are minimal or non-existent. If you have completed a professional business plan, secured financial commitments, and developed a timeline for business start-up, you may be eligible to receive a transition allowance for up to 26 weeks.

  • To be eligible, clients must not be operating an existing business.
  • Clients must attach a copy of a professionally completed business plan, letters of financial support/commitment, and a timeline indicating the processes and progress that will be made to reach business start-up
  • Applicants may not be employed for more than 25 hours/week with an external employer
  • Clients must not currently be on EI assistance
  • Clients must submit a monthly follow-up report. If the client is employed, they must submit monthly paystubs to ensure that they are not working in excess of 25 hours per week.
  • For partnerships and incorporated businesses, a maximum of one Métis business owner is eligible for the transition allowance.
  • The start-up business must be a full-time business and not a casual business

Mentorship provides an opportunity to build meaningful relationships with business owners who have been through the challenges and successes of entrepreneurship. If you are preparing for business start-up, you may be matched with a mentor for up to four months. If you are interested in becoming a mentor, please contact entrepreneurship@gdins.org to learn more!

  • Clients must have completed a professional business plan prior to being paired with a mentor.
  • Number of mentor sessions will be set at two per month (up to 8 sessions). There is no guaranteed time commitment needed, and the chosen dates are flexible.
  • Travel expenses for clients will be set at $300. Mentors may be provided an honorarium payment of $125/session and may be reimbursed travel expenses at existing GDI rates..

Business professionals and consultants can greatly enhance the ability for businesses to be successful and profitable. For example, a professional consultant may be hired to develop a marketing strategy, or establish accounting processes. An application for professional services will need to be completed and must include contact information for the service provider, agreed upon service costs, consultant qualifications, and an explanation of how the professional services will assist the client in developing, acquiring, maintaining, or expanding their business.

  • GDI may fund 100% of approved professional services up to a maximum of $10,000 per client, per lifetime.
  • Applicants must have a professional business plan completed. This funding is not intended for professional business plan development.
  • The professional services provider must be a neutral third-party, and not related to the applicant.
  • Applicants must submit two quotes from independent professional services providers when available.
  • Client applications must include a Terms of Reference:
    i. vision, objectives, scope and deliverables (i.e. what has to be achieved)
    ii.stakeholders, roles and responsibilities (i.e. who will take part in it)
    iii.resource, financial and quality plans (i.e. how it will be achieved)
    iv.work breakdown structure and schedule (i.e. when it will be achieved

GDI has created three milestone bonuses of $500 to encourage business development and start-up:

  1. Complete a professional business plan: $500. Client must submit a copy of a professionally completed business plan. The business plan must have been completed with a third party overseeing the financial projections of the business plan.
  2. Register a business in Saskatchewan: $500. Client must submit a copy of the ISC business registration number (Provincial). GDI will require that a professional third-party business plan is submitted prior to the business registration bonus being awarded.
  3. Sell to your first customer: $500. Client must provide a copy of a sales receipt to verify that the business is operational. A PST number will be required on receipts (except for businesses that provide non-taxable services).
    i. Bonuses are only available to clients who are creating new business ventures (business cannot be operational).
    ii.Bonuses will be payable to the applying Métis business owner.

Métis business owners may qualify for short specialized training for their staff (training under 24 hours of in-class time is eligible). The training must NOT be Canada-Saskatchewan Jobs Grant eligible (under 24 hours), and must result in a higher skilled workforce. Employers must be registered with Workers Compensation Board and the Canada Revenue Agency to qualify.

  • Applicant must be a Métis business owner (not an employee).
  • 50% minimum equity requirement for Métis business ownership.
  • Training must be provided by a third-party training agency.
  • Training must not be a part of regular hiring training for new employees.
  • A maximum of $10,000 in training costs may be eligible per business, per lifetime. There is no maximum on the number of employees that can be trained per business.
  • Trainees do not need to be Métis.
  • Applicants must include the training provider information, tuition, and book costs.
  • Funding will be reimbursed to the employer when training is completed.
  • Clients will be required to submit a final report, receipts for eligible training costs, and trainee documentation within 30 days of the training end date.
Gabriel Dumont Institue

GDI is a Saskatchewan-based educational, employment and cultural institute serving Métis across the province

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