Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Líl̓wat Stl’atl ́imc Business Start-up Program


The Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Líl̓wat Stl’atl ́imc Business Start-up Program (SLSBSP) is a new program being launched by the Whistler Centre for Sustainability in partnership with the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Líl̓wat Cultural Centre (SLCC). This program supports new business start-ups for local First Nation members from regional Indigenous communities including the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Nation, Líl̓wat, Lower and Upper Stl’atl ́imc Nations. The program builds upon the success of our 2015, 2016 and 2017 Social Venture Challenge programs to encourage, support and grow new businesses with a social and/or environmental purpose through capacity building, mentorship, and raising awareness.


Program Goals

  • To encourage, support and inspire new Indigenous-based business development
  • To create a stronger culture of Indigenous-based entrepreneurship that can generate greater social impact in the region

The program is based on our Social Venture Challenge program. Meet the 2017 Social Venture Challenge program participants and learn about their ventures. 

The Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Líl̓wat Stl’atl ́imc Business Start-up Program includes:

Business Model Canvas - templateLearning: Four cohort-based topic-focused learning sessions on components of business development and the Business Model Canvas

  • Value proposition and customer segments (what sets you aside from other companies and who are your customers going to be)
  • Marketing
  • Key resources
  • Partners and key stakeholders
  • Making the pitch

Inspiration: Presentations from speakers who have on-the-ground business experience will provide inspiration at each learning session and other events.

Mentorship: One-on-one support in developing and refining business concepts.

Videos: Development of a short video to promote the new business idea.

Dragons’ Den style Pitch Event – Each applicant has an opportunity to pitch their new business concept to a panel of judges at a community event. The entrepreneur with the winning business pitch will receive $5000! Each participant who completes the program will receive $1000 towards furthering their business.

Thanks to funding from the BC Rural Dividend Program, all program costs, including travel and accommodation, are covered for participants.

For more information, please contact Cheeying Ho at cho[at]whistlercentre.ca or Dawn Johnson at djohnson[at]whistlercentre.ca

Download the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Líl̓wat Stl’atl ́imc Business Start-up Program Application Form and get started today! Submit by 5:00pm on March 13th, 2018 to be considered for the program.

“The Centre’s Social Venture Challenge was a crucial step in creating our business. The process turned our idea into a solid plan and provided a great overview for our business. From marketing channels to banking info, the course taught us the necessary next steps in order to make our initiative a reality. The Centre’s team was amazing to work with; they were encouraging, knowledgeable and helpful. I would highly recommend this program to anyone with an idea for a social venture.”  Jeff Anderson, Co-owner of Dooshi Pet Treats.

Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Líl̓wat Stl’atl ́imc Business Start-up Program Partners and Sponsors

Thank you to our program partner the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Líl̓wat Cultural Centre, and our program sponsors the Province of British Columbia Rural Dividend Fund, the Resort Municipality of Whistler, Squamish Savings and Community Futures Howe Sound.




Squamish Savings