Western Economic Diversification Canada

Western Economic Diversification Canada

August 16, 2013 14:00 ET

Harper Government Invests in Business Boot Camp for Transitioning Military Personnel

REGINA, SASKATCHEWAN--(Marketwired - Aug. 16, 2013) - Canadian Forces personnel moving into civilian life now have access to the training needed to launch and sustain successful businesses, thanks to federal funding announced today by the Honourable Michelle Rempel, Minister of State for Western Economic Diversification. The investment of $150,000 will go towards the Prince's Operation Entrepreneur (POE) program, which provides personnel with new skills to pursue career options that were previously difficult to access.

"Our Government is pleased to support transitioning military personnel to civilian life by providing them with the resources they need to start a successful business," said Minister Rempel. "This investment helps them fully participate in the economy while helping to create jobs and economic prosperity in their communities."

Eligible Canadian Forces personnel will attend the week-long business boot camp, where they will learn the fundamentals of how to run a business. The federal investment, through Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD), will support up to 85 per cent of travel, meals and accommodation costs for the participants. Funding will also go towards marketing the boot camps in Western Canada.

POE was introduced in Newfoundland last year, with the majority of participants coming from Western Canada. As a result, three sessions will be held in the West in 2013 and 2014 for up to 60 military personnel. If participants are ready to start a business, they will be matched with a mentor in their community and may qualify for start-up capital of up to $45,000.

"This program marries two of The Prince of Wales's lifelong interests; supporting the Canadian Forces and encouraging entrepreneurship," said Amanda Sherrington, President and CEO of Prince's Charities Canada. "We are very pleased that Western Economic Diversification Canada has chosen to support the expansion of the Prince's Operation Entrepreneur into Saskatchewan."

The Prince's Operation Entrepreneur program is run by the non-profit Prince's Charities Canada (PCC) for Canadian Forces members retiring or transitioning out of the military. Canadian Youth Business Foundation assists the POE participants with business plans, connects them with business mentors for up to two years, and arranges low-interest financing for qualified individuals.

Since 2006, the Harper Government, through WD, has invested in job-creating small and medium-sized businesses, aerospace, marine and defence industries, and supported innovative entrepreneurs in pursuing emerging markets. By continuing to promote new economic opportunities, WD is helping to create jobs, economic growth, and long-term prosperity.

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Contact Information

  • Emily Goucher
    Office of the Minister
    Western Economic Diversification
    613-954-8097

    Matthew Rowe
    Manager of Charitable Operations
    Prince's Charities Canada
    Toronto, Ontario
    416-576-3969

    WD Toll-Free Number: 1-888-338-WEST (9378)
    Teletypewriter (TTY): 1-877-303-3388
    Website: WD is online at www.wd-deo.gc.ca