The Small Business Crafting Program was delivered to serve the needs of Aboriginal women who want to start a small business. The program included a two-part series targeting craft creation and small business start-up, along with a mentoring component. The program taught participants culturally-based crafts that may include sewing, beading, moose-hair tufting, quilling and/or weaving projects. AWPA provides the location, tools, materials, cultural community resources, and instruction to successfully produce marketable products.

The participants were exposed to small business start-up skills including business planning, marketing and financial management. At the beginning of the program they will be matched with local business owners and mentored throughout the program. The program components will be delivered concurrently and by the end of the program, participants will have the knowledge and skills necessary to compete in the local economy.


The Small Business Crafting Program objectives were to:

  1. Develop business networks and build strong cultural connections;
  2. Develop entrepreneurial and business planning skills;
  3. Enhance financial, funding opportunities, marketing; and
  4. Provide mentorship support


The Small Business Crafting Program included a variety of guest speakers, and cultural resources including Elders and cultural advisors. The program provided supports and services that included cultural connections, business knowledge and mentorship by local small business owners.  Participants contributed to creative lessons include learning to make a variety of crafts for example, moccasin making, completed a small business workbook, developed a 30 second elevator pitch for business idea and celebrated their success ceremony with mentors and participated in a craft fair.

Aboriginal Women's Professional Association