One of the best ways to find work in this area is to work for yourself.  A group of local women entrepreneurs has started a group to encourage young women who want to work on their own and to share their knowledge with others. “A lot of us feel we’ve been helped along the way. It’s a scary step to decide to be self-employed,” says Robin Badger, who owns and runs a successful pottery in West Bolton. 

The nine local women call themselves FEMS, an acronym for Female Entrepreneurs offering Mentorship and Support. They started on Instagram over the Christmas holidays with each of the women offering a prize in their field to young people who were interested. Then they decided to create a bursary of $500 for female high school graduates from the area. 

“We figured out our businesses on our own but we thought people could use help on everything from finance to marketing,” says Jamie Moar, who is a yoga instructor, and who runs the Marina restaurant. 

The winner of this year’s bursary is Destiny Picken who graduated from Massey Vanier. Along with the award she will also be given several weeks of mentoring with several of the FEMS members. 

“One of the things that links all of us is we are building our businesses around our passions and the things we love. It’s about making a living, but not just about making money,” says Robin Badger. 

The nine women and their areas of business are: Jennifer Adams, Nature Nerding; Robin Badger, Pottery; Kylla Bowbrick, Boulangerie Lace; Sarah Holmes, Dance/Fitness Instructor; Jennifer Hopkins, Upholstery; Megan Hlusko, Veterinarian and photographer; Stephanie Lenaerts, Soap maker; Jamie Moar, Restaurateur and Yoga Instructor; Lee Mosher, Jewellery (also grade 2 teacher).