Many people often cite lack of money as the reason for not starting a business. You need money to help get your business off the ground and to continue to run the business. The costs can add up quickly, especially if you are still in the growth stage, which can be a few years.
There are many ways to fund a startup and the funding comes in many different forms. Not only that, the type of goals you have for your business will determine the type of funding you seek. When we first began Kaibigan Connection, we were bootstrapping, – meaning we were both using our own money to fund the venture.
When the opportunity to apply for funding came along through our incubator, Sheridan EDGE, and we found out we met all the criteria, we jumped at the chance. The selection committee wanted to make sure applicants were serious about the venture – so we had to provide a lot of detailed info such as how we would spend the funds, what are major milestones planned, etc. Some of the information we already had at hand, whereas there were certain things we had to think about, which helped us further clarify our vision.
It was our first time applying for funding, but it most likely won’t be our last. I considered it to be a valuable learning experience overall for us as a social venture. To be honest, before we started Kaibigan Connection, I wasn’t even really aware of the concept of social entrepreneurship or what a social venture was. But I learned by doing, researching and asking high-quality questions to get high-quality answers.
I wish I had recorded the conversation between Rigel and me when we found out about the news last Thursday. It was a mixture of screaming, laughing and crying. While we can’t celebrate with you in person, we want to give everyone who has supported our community thus far a big virtual hug.
You all are key building blocks that support the Kaibigan Connection structure.
We are also very grateful to be part of an incubator such as EDGE that supports social ventures like ours. Even though we are co-founders and have each other to lean on, being part of an incubator has helped our startup tremendously.
I don’t want to go into the details just yet, but this funding will be used to help further develop the vision of the social venture much sooner than if we were to continue to just bootstrap alone. It will help us focus on the bigger picture.
The money is out there, you just have to know where to look for it. The application can be a lengthy process, but you can reuse the information you’ve already gathered about your business to apply for future funding. Believe me when I say it is worth it.
Below is a list of just a few of the many organizations and businesses that provide funding. Some of the deadlines may have already passed, but it’s definitely worth noting to apply for them in 2021.
CrowdFunding – If you have an existing community that supports you, you may want to look into crowdfunding through Kickstarter and Indiegogo. Our friends at Mixed Bowl Media ran an Indiegogo campaign to help fund their TV Pilot – Where Are You Really From?
RBC – The Royal Bank of Canada has plenty of funding opportunities for your specific cause through donations and sponsorships.
All In For Equity -Rogers Sports & Media is home to Canada’s most beloved media brands and trusted influencers. They are giving away a minimum of $10 million dollars in free advertising and creative services over the next five years to help small business, charities and organizations that support equity-seeking groups.
This blog post by QuickBooks provides some handy tools and tips to get funding for Canadian small businesses, startups and non-profit organizations.