FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – August 26, 2021
Regina, SK – SaskPower has signed onto the Saskatchewan Women Entrepreneurship Charter, an initiative led by Women Entrepreneurs Saskatchewan (WESK). As a Charter Champion, SaskPower has committed to supporting women-owned businesses in Saskatchewan.
In May of 2019, the Government of Saskatchewan announced the creation of the WESK-led Saskatchewan Advisory Committee, an influential group of respected business leaders responsible for advising on strategies, policies, and activities to level the playing field for Saskatchewan women entrepreneurs. In July 2020, the Committee released their final report of recommendations entitled Enabling Scale in Saskatchewan. The report includes ten recommendations, including the launch of a charter to build a pool of champions in support of women entrepreneurs.
The Charter affirms a commitment to advance women entrepreneurship and build connections through four defining principles: 1) Procure with her; 2) Amplify her voice; 3) Share skills with her; and 4) Shatter a ceiling. Through the signing of the charter, Champions are not only committing to doing business with local women-owned companies, but they are also actively seeking and creating opportunities to support women entrepreneurs in practical and quantifiable ways.
“SaskPower firmly believes in advancing women entrepreneurs in Saskatchewan and will continue to actively look for opportunities to do so, which is why we have signed onto the Charter,” said SaskPower President and CEO Mike Marsh. “SaskPower is committed to a sustainable supply chain and this partnership with Women Entrepreneurs Saskatchewan will allow SaskPower to continue to build a diverse chain of suppliers and help support women-owned businesses in Saskatchewan.”
“We are very pleased to see SaskPower join the ranks of those paving the way towards gender entrepreneurship parity,” commented Prabha Mitchell, CEO of WESK. “Notwithstanding that SaskPower is the largest crown corporation in our province, signing onto the Charter reflects a strong commitment to advancing equal opportunities for economic growth. Through the support of the Government of Saskatchewan, the province has positioned itself to lead the country as the preeminent place for women to start, grow, and scale their businesses.”
Women entrepreneurs are major contributors to economic growth and job creation. In 2019, women entrepreneurs contributed $23.1 billion to the Saskatchewan economy and created 191,836 jobs. However, research indicates women entrepreneurs encounter unique barriers that hinder full participation in growing the wealth of our province. By understanding and addressing the unique barriers that women entrepreneurs encounter, Charter Champions can enhance opportunities to scale businesses and boost economic growth in the province.
“This partnership fits so nicely with SaskPower’s Diversity and Inclusion strategy,” noted Kathy McCrum, Vice President, Human Resources & Safety at SaskPower. “We have put significant focus on changing our traditional norms to allow for more space and opportunities for women to succeed at SaskPower. We know we have more work to do, but our executive leadership is committed to continuing to take intentional action to ensure women are more representative in our workforce and in our supply chain.”
For more information, please contact:
Josie Fries, Marketing Advisor, WESK
WESK is a non-profit, membership-based organization that provides business advising, lending, mentoring, networking, and learning opportunities. WESK is supported by Western Economic Diversification Canada.
In the past 26 years, WESK has provided over $40.4 million in financing to women entrepreneurs and as a result, more than $3.43 million has been leveraged.