Program Launched to support Women in Social Enterprise

NORDIK Institute’s Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship (SEE) Initiative is launching a two-part program to support women in developing their community-change ideas into social enterprise. Part One, Idea Development to Action Plan, draws out peoples’ passion for addressing a social, cultural or environmental concern, and shaping it into a business idea. The online program is tailored to women’s needs with opportunities for networking and discussion groups to create a community of changemakers. It welcomes those who are keen to explore how to move their ideas forward.

“The program considers the COVID-19 context, recognizing increased challenges in balancing the demands of business startup and daily life by offering one class per week” explains Krista Bissiallon, Social Enterprise Program Lead, “It also acknowledges that many women are interested in launching a part-time business, and not necessarily growing it into a full-time venture.”

The 16-week course provides insight into the romance and reality of being an entrepreneur, building readiness capacity. Topics include personal characteristics that support success; developing a business story; traditional business models and sharing structures, creating value beyond the financial; supply chains; community asset mapping; and leading in uncertainty. Each participant creates an Action Plan identifying their next steps in the entrepreneurial journey.

Apply now for Part One: Idea Development to Action Plan starting September 28. For more information please contact Krista Bissiallon in the Northeastern region and Allyson Pele in the Northwestern region.

Part Two, Business Plan Development to Action Plan, will be launching in spring 2021. It unpacks the business planning process, providing the nuts and bolts of preparing to launch an enterprise.

The program is part of the Women of Ontario Social Enterprise Network (WOSEN), project that supports women and gender non-binary people, typically underrepresented in business, to create and grow enterprises that embed social values into their business model, such as through cooperative, non-profit, as well as both for-profit and not-for-profit social enterprises.


NORDIK (Northern Ontario Research, Development, Ideas and Knowledge) Institute is an innovative community-based research hub that has evolved from the Community, Economic, and Social Development (CESD) program and research at Algoma University. It is committed to the practice of holistic community development and has established strong links with other research institutes, universities, and colleges. NORDIK is committed to the practice of holistic community development and building local research capacity by working closely with its community partners and providing mentorship to new researchers and community development practitioners. For more information, please visit

Social Enterprise and Entrepreneurship (SEE) is an initiative led by NORDIK Institute to support the development of the social economy through the building capacity of social entrepreneurship by strengthening the ecosystem. For more information please visit

WOSEN is a collaborative led by Pillar Nonprofit Network in partnership with NORDIK Institute, the Centre for Social Innovation and Social Venture Connexion (SVX). NORDIK’s SEE is the lead for the Northern Ontario region. This collaborative was funded by the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), through the Women’s Entrepreneurship Strategy Ecosystem Fund.

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