COVID-19 and the need to maintain physical distancing has dramatically impacted on our ability to network and make new contacts. Don’t despair, there are still plenty of ways to make […]
COVID-19 Resources & Support
Women’s Enterprise Centre is focused on supporting women-owned businesses through this crisis so that when it is over you can get back to business as usual.
We’re here for you!
We know this situation is fluid, and is changing on a daily basis. We’d like to encourage any of our clients to utilize our complimentary Business Advisory Services if you need an understanding person to talk to about your particular situation.
Please see below for the concessions we’re making for loan clients and some helpful resources for business owners and employers.
We keep this page updated with the latest information.
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Resources for Canadian businesses – A comprehensive list of resources for businesses, their employees and self-employed individuals including financial support, loans and access to credit. From the Government of Canada.
- B.C. Employer Training Grant – C19 Impacted Worker Training Stream – This training stream supports British Columbians that are employed or have been employed in sectors impacted by COVID-19. Eligible BC employers are offered reimbursement of 100% of eligible training costs, up to a max of $10,000 per participant per fiscal year. Training must start on or before Dec 31, 2021.
- Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) – This subsidy will provide payments directly to qualifying renters and property owners, without requiring the participation of landlords. There is no minimum revenue drop from Sep 27, 2020 to Jul 3, 2021; a 10% minimum revenue drop is required from Jul 4, 2021 to Sep 25, 2021.
- B.C. PST Rebate on Select Machinery and Equipment – Incorporated entitles in BC can apply to receive an amount equal to the PST they paid between September 17, 2020 and September 30, 2021 on qualifying machinery and equipment. Eligible entities have until March 31, 2022 to apply.
- B.C. Increased Employment Incentive – BC employers can receive a one-time tax credit of 15% of the amount that the employer’s total eligible remuneration for all eligible employees in the qualifying period exceeds the employer’s total eligible remuneration for all eligible employees in the base period. Employers may be individuals, corporations, partnerships, or trusts.
- New Canada Recovery Hiring Program (CRHP) – The CRHP provides eligible employers a subsidy of up to 50% of incremental remuneration paid to eligible active employees between June 6, 2021, and November 20, 2021. The program is designed to offset a portion of the extra costs employers take on as they reopen, encouraging business owners to increase wages and hours of operation and to ultimately bring back furloughed or laid-off employees and hire new staff. A business can apply for the CEWS or the CRHP, but not both.
- BC’s Restart Plan (Updated July 2, 2021) – Four-step phased re-opening for BC businesses and communities.
- Federal Budget 2021: A Recovery Plan for Jobs, Growth and Resilience (Announced April 19, 2021)
- Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP) Guarantee (Updated June 25, 2021) – Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) will work with participating Canadian financial institutions to offer government-guaranteed, low-interest loans of up to $1 million to businesses in sectors hit hard by the pandemic. Eligible businesses can apply for the HASCAP starting Feb 1 at principal financial institutions.
- Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) – As a Canadian employer who has seen a drop in revenue during the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be eligible for a subsidy to cover part of your employee wages. This subsidy will enable you to re-hire workers, help prevent further job losses, and ease your business back into normal operations.
- Canada Recovery Benefit (for self-employed individuals) – Gives income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are directly affected by COVID-19 and are not entitled to Employment Insurance (EI) benefits. You may re-apply up to a total of 25 eligibility periods (50 weeks) between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021.
- Work-Sharing Program – Increased support and flexibility for Work-Sharing agreements to help employers and employees avoid layoffs. Measures have been extended to September 26, 2021.
- Tool from the Government of Canada: Find financial help during COVID-19 – A tool that will ask you 6-8 questions and then present to you a list of benefits that may help in your situation.
- Up-to-date source for Government of Canada Financial and Other Supports
- COVID-19 and Returning to Safe Operation, from WorkSafeBC
- Guidance for Industries Returning to Work, from the Province of BC
- BC COVID-19 Go-Forward Management Strategy, from the Province of BC
- Guide to Navigate Government Supports for Businesses and Individuals in BC, from the Province of BC
- COVID-19 and Canada’s International Trade, from the Trade Commissioner Service
- Updates from the BC Centre for Disease Control: COVID-19 Information for the public
Resources from Women’s Enterprise Centre
Free one-on-one appointments with a Business Advisor
Our Business Advisory team is available to discuss your situation, review your cash flow and generate ideas for how you can navigate this difficult time. Connect with a Business Advisor >>
Unity Women Entrepreneurs Program, in partnership with Vancity
Women’s Enterprise Centre is excited to partner with Vancity to support women entrepreneurs as you navigate your business through COVID-19 and beyond! Access a line of credit or loan from Vancity, and receive complimentary support from us. Learn more >>
- Recording from June 24, 2021: Bidding on Opportunities with the Government of Canada
- Recording from June 21, 2021: How to Write Website Content So Your Customers Find You
- Recording from May 27, 2021: How to Protect Your Business from Cyber Threats
- Recording from April 20, 2021: Backlinks: How to Use Link Building to Improve Your SEO
- Recording from March 25, 2021: Ask Me Anything on Government Contracting
- Recording from March 11, 2021: How to Do Keyword Research
- Recording from February 16, 2021: How to Build Trust and Connection Online
- Recording from January 19, 2021: Indigenous Businesses: Open Doors by Selling to the Government
- Recording from December 1: Ask Me Anything: Doing Business with the Government
- Recording from October 14: Build Back with Trust
- Recording from September 17: How to Get and Grow Your Website Traffic: The Basics
- Recording from September 15: Privacy: How to Outsource Work While Keeping You and Your Customers Safe
- Recording from September 10: Export Ready: Resources to Grow Your Business Outside of BC
- Recording from August 27: How to Plan and Launch a New Website
- Recording from August 10: Small Claims: A Practical Guide to Dispute Resolution
- Recording from July 15: Application of Force Majeure Clauses During a Pandemic
- Recording from June 23, with Women of Whistler: National Support for Women Entrepreneurs
- Recording from June 10: Social Media: Save Time Using a Content Calendar
- Recording from May 14: Blogging for Business
- Recording from May 6: SEO for Beginners: How Customers Find You Online
- Recording from April 23: Grants for Business: Where to Find Them, How to Use Them
- Click here to view recordings of past Strength in Numbers Sessions for Businesses Affected by COVID-19, including:
- Conversational Intelligence®: Shift Your Conversations from Good to Great, from June 30
- Meeting Privacy Compliance During COVID-19, from June 16
- The Back to Business Edition, from May 26
- New Rules of Zoom Engagement, from May 19
- The Self-Care Edition, from May 9
- Gaining Momentum Edition, from May 1
- The HR Edition, from April 24
- Legal Q&A, from April 17
- Best Practices Forum, from April 9
- List of Shop Local Initiatives in BC
- Cash Flow Template Excel File
- 7 Ideas to Keep Your Small Business Going During the Pandemic
- Learning Guide downloads available for $15 each:
Tell us: What Help Do You Need?
- Resource Hubs from our Partners
- Connect with your local Chamber of Commerce, as many are holding local roundtables to discuss the specific needs of businesses in your community.
- Small Business BC – Complimentary COVID-19 support service, resources for small businesses and Small Business Marketplace to list your business as open or find other businesses to support
- Women of Influence – Hub of resources for women entrepreneurs adapting to a new normal
- Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) – Small business help centre
- BC Economic Development Association – Extensive list of supports available for BC businesses
- Greater Vancouver Board of Trade – Business resiliency webinar series and timely updates on government supports
- HR Resources
- Coronavirus Employer Guide, from Osler
- Discounts and complimentary tech services for small businesses, list from Unbounce
- Low-cost online mediation program, from MediateBC
- Mental Health
- Virtual Mental Health Supports for COVID-19 on the way, from the Province of BC
- Canada Wellness Together Portal, from the Government of Canada
- Webinar Recording: Supporting Rural Women Entrepreneurs Through COVID-19 and Beyond, from Women Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub (WEKH)
Financial Response Measures
- We suggest you contact your primary bank to ask for what types of supports are available to you.
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19): Resources for Canadian businesses, from the Government of Canada
- FortisBC Billing Support During COVID-19
- BMO Celebrating Women Grant Program will provide 10 women business owners each with a $10,000 grant