The importance of women's contributions to Saskatchewan business is being highlighted with Women Entrepreneurs Week which takes place in the province May 3-9.
Close to 33,000 women were self-employed in Saskatchewan in 2009. This has had a significant - and increasing - impact in provincial employment and economic activity; between 1978 and 2008, the number of self-employed women grew by 1.7 per cent per year.
"The participation of women, particularly women entrepreneurs, in Saskatchewan's economy is a crucial part of our continued prosperity," Enterprise Minister Ken Cheveldayoff said. "Small business is the backbone of this prosperity and women are not only major participants in this respect, but are helping to lead the way for others."
The week features the Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan's 2010 Business Conference and Annual General Meeting on May 7 in Regina. The organization is marking its 15th Anniversary this year.
"We are extremely proud to be celebrating 15 years of assisting women entrepreneurs in our province," Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan's CEO Laura Small said. "To know our organization has played a significant role in the success of these businesses is very rewarding."
Women Entrepreneurs of Saskatchewan is a non-profit organization that encourages and helps women start or expand businesses in the province. Since its inception, Women Entrepreneurs has grown to more than 1,000 members, lent more than $17 million to new and existing businesses in Saskatchewan and assisted more than 32,000 women with information and pathfinding services.