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Movement51 and Calgary Immigrant Women's Association receive $860K to support women investors and entrepreneurs

The funding is meant to support business training, financing, mentorship and investor education programs for 600 women entrepreneurs in Alberta.

Prairies Economic Development Canada (PrairiesCan) is partnering with two local organizations to provide training that will boost women’s participation in Alberta’s economy. The federal agency announced an investment of $861,980 for two Calgary-based initiatives focused on growing small businesses through targeted support for women entrepreneurs and investors.

Movement51 is receiving $486,350 to deliver financial literacy workshops and coaching to 550 women investors across the Prairies. The initiative aims to equip women with the capacity, confidence and networks to become active early-stage investors.

The Calgary Immigrant Women's Association is receiving $375,630 to launch a new business incubator program for immigrant women in Alberta to build entrepreneurial knowledge and skills, create business plans and access start-up financing. This investment is expected to help train over 60 immigrant women while assisting in the growth of more than 20 small businesses.

In total, the initiatives are expected to directly assist more than 600 women entrepreneurs and investors according to a government statement.

"As we work to eliminate gender disparity in the realms of investing, entrepreneurship and financial knowledge, championship from national partners like PrairiesCan is significant for Movement51,” said Danielle Gifford, executive director of Movement51, said in a statement. “This funding will enable us to continue the expansion of our educational platform that's powering the full economic participation of women and gender-diverse people in Canada."

The news was welcomed by local agency Calgary Economic Development (CED), which has previously supported Movement51 and its Financial Feminism Investing Lab. Last December, CED announced funding of up to $333,000 for the program.

“Creating an inclusive and accessible economy where everyone can succeed is the foundation of our economic strategy and vision for Calgary,” said Deana Haley, vice president of corporate initiatives and intelligence at CED, in a statement. “The Opportunity Calgary Investment Fund is a supporter of Movement51's Financial Feminism Investing Lab and this funding, together with the Government of Canada's investment in Movement51 and the Calgary Immigrant Women's Association, will help advance the economic empowerment of women in our city as the place to scale big ideas to the size of your ambitions.”

Movement51 is a not-for-profit organization established by The51, which has a goal to address financial feminism inequalities that affect women and gender-diverse people across Canada. The51 was founded in Calgary in 2019 and provides access to women-led capital for early-stage businesses.