Community Futures announced on Monday that they have a new program for entrepreneurs who are women. Project Gazelle is an incubator, which helps new and small businesses develop, that will serve Northern Alberta and Northwest Saskatchewan.

With a minimum of 6 incubators available over the next four years, women who want to develop their business concepts are now able to do so. The incubators can be traveling or virtual. Phyllis Maki, General Manager of Community Futures, leaves the concepts to entrepreneurs. 

“They are going to have the ideas. They are going to know what they’re good at doing, what skill sets they have. I don’t want to come into this with any preconceived notions.” 

Project Gazelle offers training, specialized coaching and mentoring through the incubators. Realizing that day-care can hold entrepreneurs back, Community Futures built it into the funding. Translators can also be provided. Training concepts will discuss successful business startups, and will be customized to the specific needs for each concept. Maki, is looking forward to seeing how this impacts the future for this region. 

“Women are being recognized as entrepreneurs and the abilities that they have to be entrepreneurs. And if we are able to create more female entrepreneurs and create business and economic turn around for this entire region, I think that will be phenomenal for this point in time, given what the economy is looking like.” 

The reason for naming it Project Gazelle is to represent the quick spirit that women entrepreneurs show and how adaptable they are. Community Futures is hoping that rural communities will become more accessible through the incubators that are available in the years to come. 

Written By: True Victoria