This grant blog addresses the following topics:

  • Surprisingly not many grants for female entrepreneurs
  • Grants for women are presented
  • Status of Women Ministries and Calls for Proposals

Don’t Wait! Download our "Three Steps to Winning a Government Grant" PDF here -

Are there any grants for female entrepreneurs?


Are there many?


Where are they?

Further down in this blog.

Contrary to what you probably heard, you will find few grants for female entrepreneurs.


I don’t know.

But I hear often that “there has got to be grants out there for women starting businesses.”

No wonder people think that.

With the Alberta Government NDP and the federal government Liberal, a great deal of attention has been paid to women issues.

When the Alberta NDP had an election platform, it mentioned women 11 times. Here it is:

The NDP promised a Woman’s Ministry, and they created one. And that ministry created a grant program with two streams: Innovation and Enhancement.

Here they are for your convenience:

Status of Women Grant Program - Innovation Stream

Value: Maximum $100,000


The Alberta Status of Women Grant Program helps non-profits and charitable organizations fund projects that improve the lives of women and girls in Alberta through 2 streams: Innovation and Enhancement. Collaboration with another organization should lead to knowledge-sharing in the community and in the organization; results that advance gender equality in Alberta; a connection to Status of Women’s 3 priority areas.


Primary Organization:

  • Registered charities and registered not-for-profit organizations
  • Community-based coalitions and networks (name an incorporated fiscal agent in the application)

Collaborative Organization:

  • Registered charities, not-for-profit organizations, government, community-based coalitions, networks and educational organizations that work directly with the Primary Organization
  • Businesses
  • Organizations, groups or entities that would not qualify to apply on their own
  • Collaborative Organizations do not need to be a registered charity or non-profit organization

Eligible projects

  • The focus must be on one or more of 3 Status of Women priority areas:
  • Increasing women’s economic security
  • Preventing and addressing gender-based violence, which includes
  • Increasing women in leadership and democratic participation

    Eligible Expenses:
  • Supplies
  • Marketing
  • Child care
  • Travel costs and venue rental
  • Evaluation fee
  • Training, salary for staff working on the project (up to 12 months)
  • Capital-related purchases (e.g. printers, office equipment etc.) directly related to the project
  • Rent or mortgage payments directly related to the project

Deadline: Ongoing

Contact: Status of Women |


You can learn more about the enhancement stream here:

Finding grants for female entrepreneurs is tricky, but one exists. Here it is for your convenience.

Women Entrepreneurship Fund | Startup Canada:

Value: Maximum $3000


The Startup Canada Women Entrepreneurship Fund invests in high-impact, grassroots initiatives across Canada that advance women entrepreneurship through education, investment, mentorship and access to growth opportunity. The Fund is brought to you in partnership with Startup Canada and Dell Canada in an effort to enable entrepreneurial leaders across Canada to mobilize and create an entrepreneurial environment that encourages and empowers women to be successful entrepreneurs. The programs objectives are:

  • Invest in community-driven initiatives that foster an environment and culture which encourages women entrepreneurs in Canada
  • Develop and harness the potential for women entrepreneurs in Canada through education, mentorship and support

Drive awareness of the importance of women in entrepreneurship to increase engagement, investment and growth opportunities for women-led companies


  • Any Canadian-based entrepreneur, group or organization.

Eligible Expenses:

Programs or events that support women entrepreneurs and women-owned businesses such as:

  • Women’s entrepreneurship conference
  • Speaker series
  • Mentorship program
  • A workshop series
  • Trade missions, etc. 

Deadline: Currently closed. Future deadline February 2018.

Contact: Renee Tavares |


Status of Women Ministries

Now I have a couple of important grants points here.

One of the most painful things in grants is known as “calls for proposals.” Please allow me to translate that governmentese term to English, so that you can understand and win a grant.

Definition for the term “Call for Proposals - “Hey everybody, over here! We have a bunch of free money to give away. You have six weeks to get your grant application in. Don’t delay!”

I’m being serious.

Then the government will run advertisements to try and get people to stop what they are doing (making payroll) and submit a quality application. Fair enough.

Here is a recent example:

Call for proposal.JPG

Now we get to the painful part.

Do you know when the call for proposals open for female grants or grants in your industry? Do you know when the new Growing Forward 3 program opens?

If you’re serious about winning grants, you can subscribe to all the different grant agencies. Another option is to use our complementary grant needs assessment tool. When you fill out what grant categories you’re looking for, I plan on sending people grant notifications (i.e. call for proposals) based on their interests:

A less detailed option is to join our mailing list by downloading our Winning Grant PDF here:

Women’s Programs

And now we can return to the federal status of woman program.

According to its website, the objective of the Women's Program is to achieve the full participation of women in the economic, social and democratic life of Canada. Funding is provided to eligible organizations in support of projects at the local, regional and national levels that address the following three priority areas:

  • Ending violence against women and girls
  • Improving women's and girls' economic security and prosperity
  • Encouraging women and girls in leadership and decision-making roles

Funding is available for time-specific projects of 36 months or less that address barriers to women's participation and equality in Canadian society. Eligible organizations and activities are determined by the Women's Program's funding criteria. Funding is not provided for ongoing activities, such as an organization's operations and administration. Also, as available funds are limited, not all qualified applicants may receive funding.

Now here is the tricky part under “How do I apply.”

“The Women's Program issues targeted calls for proposals on specific themes, each with a number of predetermined elements, and application deadlines.” Nothing open now. Learn about past calls here:

Are there grants for women? Yeah, but not many. And the ones available you have to watch closely. 

Have a great day.

David Kincade

Phone: 780.297.6177


p.s. If you haven’t already, download our "Three Steps to Winning a Government Grant" PDF here -