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New foundation aims to empower rural women

The Rise Up Foundation aims to empower women in rural northeast Saskatchewan to rise up and achieve balance in work and life through community workshops.
Laura Nycholat is behind the Rise Up Foundation, which aims to empower women in rural northeast Saskatchewan to rise up and achieve balance in work and life through community workshops.

NIPAWIN — Laura Nycholat, a business consultant from Nipawin and a trained facilitator and vocational educator, is gaining a following for inspiring and ensuring women in rural northeast Saskatchewan rise up and achieve balance in work and life through community workshops.

Nycholat is trained in human resources and has worked in Alberta for TC Energy, Deloitte Human Capital Consulting, and Nutrien for more than 15 years. Since the COVID pandemic, she has moved to northeast Saskatchewan and is making Nipawin her home

“I noticed COVID changed many aspects of people’s lives,” she said. “It especially affected women and affected me directly. I have not been back at my job in Calgary since the pandemic started.”

In 2022, Nycholat started the Rise Up Foundation because she wanted to bring these skills to rural Saskatchewan in a way that is accessible to all women.

Nycholat said she read an article in the Centre of Creative Leadership, which is an organization that major corporations use for research on leadership. It laid out four key components for women to be successful post-pandemic.

Nycholat said women at her workshops talk about their goals and how they should be smart and achievable. Laura said these goals need to move towards daily intentions. Building Intention is about creating space and tuning into where you are in that very moment. Life coach Elsa Borsa from Carrot River has helped start the conversations at the workshops, encouraging individual insight and empowerment.

Diamond North Credit Union has become a committed sponsor for the first series of workshops in January 2023 and has continued their sponsorship for the next “Meet and Mingle” workshops set for April 2023. Nycholat said that judgement is left at the door and that these workshops are a safe place where respect is a key part of the conversation. Nipawin restaurant The Dam Smokehouse has been hosting the RiSE UP Series, offering breakfast sammies that are creatively tailored to each event. These events are free and women of all walks of life are encouraged to register and attend.

Due to consistent feedback, Nycholat has organized a “Couples Building Intention” workshop that is anchored to the same themes offered at past events. She found there was a want from participants to bring their spouse or significant other to learn how to focus in on their daily intentions together. This workshop is scheduled for March 4.

Women and the Art of Building Intention will be another workshop she hosts which will be open to women and a guest. This guest can be as young as age 6 and up to participate. During this workshop, participants gain skills to recognize how we feel in that moment and how the art of intention is in our yeses and nos. Her 6 year old daughter has been asking to attend the workshops and this Meet & Mingle is centered around ART which should be well received by all ages.

The Rise Up Community Foundation has a board of directors who consist of Patti Propp, who is a local entrepreneur running a market garden, farm and preserves business (The Homestead Cannery) near Codette. Propp said she is passionate about inspiring and empowering women to fulfill their dreams. She has history in planning events, especially women’s events and retreats. She is new to this area of Saskatchewan and is eager to support the Rise Up organization by supporting women entrepreneurs and leaders in the community.

Also a board member is Corina Musfelt, an administrative assistant currently working at North Fringe Industrial Technologies Inc. in Nipawin. She moved to Nipawin in June 2019 from B.C. with her two younger children. She is passionate about helping others and enjoys the many outdoor activities that are offered here like fishing, sledding, quadding, and playing slow pitch. She is looking forward to being part of the Rise UP Community Advisory Foundation and the many wonderful opportunities that it will give to our community.

The foundation is in the process of setting up its board, with the first board meeting on Friday, Feb 17 in Nipawin. If anyone is interested, they can contact Laura at

If you are interested in any of the workshops go to or find them on Facebook at Rise Up Community Advisory Foundation. You can contact Nycholat at 587-999-0452.

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