Youth Entrepreneurship

The Canadian Youth Business Foundation (CYBF) is a national charity dedicated to growing our nation's economy one young entrepreneur at a time. We look at character not collateral, when providing youth, age 18-34, with pre-launch coaching, business resources, start-up financing and mentoring, to help them launch and sustain a successful entrepreneurial business.

No Time Like the Present

By: Mirjana Mistry


Today's economy is posing a challenge to many businesses and individuals, whether it relates to business closures, job losses, or the lack of job opportunities for graduating students. Added to the challenge is that 70% of small business owners plan to retire within the next 5-10 years, leaving an enormous economic and service gap in Alberta's communities.

Entrepreneurship is the fabric that creates a healthy community and an enjoyable living experience. Without entrepreneurship our communities are lost and the very essence of what makes them strong and vibrant is gone.

Canada has no shortage of young people ready and willing to defy the current economic downturn and fill the gap, the entrepreneurship gap. But why aren't more youth taking the leap?

Is it fear, lack of funding and guidance, or because they want to get more experience in the workforce? Whatever the reason, now is the time to make the leap and open a business.

One entrepreneur who views this economy as an opportunity is Jordan Ubbens, Director and CEO of Snowgami Building Supply, Grande Prairie. Snowgami Building Supply provides personal, in-home consultation and affordable flooring solutions to homeowners and contractors; a key service differentiator not offered by large competitors.

"If there's one thing we cannot afford to lose in these times, it's innovation, and the reality is that companies which survive a difficult birth are more likely to endure future challenges. The final word in this economy is value; if the value is there, the returns will follow. The hope for any new business is that they will be uniquely positioned when the market recovers. Another reason to start-up during a challenging economic time is self-sufficiency. CYBF provides a major stepping stone on the way to self-reliance with their 'strength of character, not strength of credit' policy," says Jordan.

Start by doing your research and then begin writing your business plan. Connect with local organizations which offer answers to questions regarding start-up coaching, key resources, start-up financing, where to find a mentor and much more. If you have the idea and the desire to start your own business, help is out there. After all, there is no time like the present.