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ARE YOU A WOMAN LOOKING FOR A new professional start?

The Let’s Start Up Program offers you concrete means to develop your skills through training, coaching and financial support. 

The Let’s Start Up Program,

A free professional development program!

During your journey in the Let’s Start Up program, you will participate in workshops and meetings in person to find out your possibilities in order to reveal, activate and develop your full professional potential!

The structure of the Let’s Start Up Program

Step 1 : Develop your professional potential

The first few weeks of training focus on entrepreneurial values and attitudes, everybody can develop an entrepreneurial spirit! This is useful in business, but also in other personal and professional contexts. Once you have completed this first step, you will receive a Certificate of Skills Development from Concordia University Continuing Education!

Step 2 : Get into action

During the second step of the program, you will choose your professional stream, whether it be entrepreneurship, preparation for a new job or a return to school.

Entrepeneurship
Certified by Concordia University, the entrepreneurship program offers complete support for the pre-start-up and start-up of your business.

8-week  I  7 group workshops
Individual coaching 

  • Ideation and development of business plan  
  • Certification from Concordia University  
  • Coaching by entrepreneurship experts  
  • Access to microloans: up to $10,000   
Education
The Post-Secondary Education stream offers coaching and financial assistance to help you complete your degree in a reasonable timeframe.

Duration : According to the chosen program of study
Individual coaching 

  • Choice of a full-time post-secondary program  
  • Monthly follow-up by a counsellor  
  • Access to financial aid ranging between $5,000 to $13,000 / year
Employment
The Return to Work stream offers support in your job search.

Individual coaching and referral to appropriate resources

  • Coaching by a professional development advisor
  • Search for a professional goal that will lead you to a sustainable financial independence
  • Review of acquired skills  
  • Exploration of job opportunities that meet your expectations    

Many advantages

Inclusive and free

A free program that requires no financial contribution and is open to all women 18 years of age or older who wish to find financial independence. The program is offered in English in Montreal and Toronto and is available in French in all our Quebec service points.

Free program - Let's Start Up

Concrete tools

The program offers training, coaching, financial support and access to a network.

Flexible and adapted

The program offers a hybrid educational design (online and in person) to reconcile personal and professional life.

Let’s Start Up Community

Join the Let’s Start Up Community: a dynamic group of women that promotes networking, the creation of solid ties and provides access to continuing education on relevant subjects (webinars, conferences and coffee chats).

A new cohort starts in September 2024.
Submit your application for the Let’s Start Up program, it’s free!

How to submit your application for the Let’s Start Up Program

  1. First, contact the Let’s Start Up advisor at the service point nearest you by filling out the form below.
  2. Once the form is submitted, the advisor in your region will contact you to verify your eligibility within 48 hours maximum. If you are eligible, the advisor will guide you through the next steps to complete your registration.

Fill the form

Address(Required)
When is the best time to reach you by phone?(Required)
To verify your eligibility, a counsellor from the Let’s Start Up Program in your region will contact you as soon as possible. Note that, for confidentiality reasons, our counsellor’s number will be displayed as a private number.

Service points

If you have any questions, contact the service point nearest you. Be sure to include your telephone number so that the Let’s Start Up program counselor can call you back more easily.

Montreal
YWCA Montreal

1355, René-Lévesque Boulevard West
Montreal (Quebec) H3G 1T3

514 866-9941 ext. 290
sentreprendre@ydesfemmesmtl.org

Quebec
Étape Emploi

100-3100 Bourg-Royal Avenue
Quebec (Quebec) G1C 5S7

418-529-8052 ext. 223 sandrine@fondationlisewatier.com

Laurentians
La Porte de l’Emploi

100 Ducharme Boulevard, Suite 250
Sainte-Thérèse (Quebec) J7E 4R6

450 435-4565 ext. 236
chantale@fondationlisewatier.com

Montérégie
Le Coffre

5664, chemin de Chambly
Saint-Hubert (Québec) J3Y 7E5

450 678-3838 ext. 323
annie@fondationlisewatier.com

Toronto
YWCA Toronto
T

3090, Kingston Road, Suite 300
Scarborough (Ontario) M1M 1P2

416 269-0091 ext. 231
LetsStartUp@ywcatoronto.org

Frequently asked questions

Who is the program for?

The Let’s Start Up Program is for you if:  

  • You are a woman over the age of 18  
  • You want to become financially independent, but you need a little help to launch a professional project to do it
  • AND you are ready to take action 
How much time should I spend on my project per week?


The program requires an involvement of 3 hours per week in class and approximately 3 hours per week to complete assignments, homework, and individual meetings.

Am I eligible even if I am working or on last resort assistance or unemployment insurance?

Yes, the program is free even if you are working or receiving last resort assistance or unemployment insurance.

I am not in a vulnerable situation; can I join the program?

The program is offered to all women who wish to undertake professional activities in order to achieve financial independence. If you are unsure of your eligibility, contact the service point nearest you and a program counsellor will verify if you are eligible.

Testimonials

“ The Let’s Start Up Program allowed me to get out of an unfavorable situation. It enabled me to structure my project and to feel good about myself as a woman. Today, I can dive headfirst into my entrepreneurial adventure, and it’s exhilarating! ”

Lina

” The Let’s Start Up Program allowed me to truly find my place. I know my strenghts, and that has sparked a host of possibilities for me and my family. I feel that I am in the right place, at the right time. All of this is well beyond my expectations! “ 

Geneviève

“Go ahead, believe in your dreams because anything is possible, really, ANYTHING! Never, at 60, would I have thought it was possible… But thanks to the Let’s Start Up program, I have come out of my shell; I now realize how much potential I have, and I know I will make it.”

Sylvie

MARIE-ÈVE

Graduate of the Let’s Start Up Program

The Lise Watier Foundation offers the Let’s Start Up program in Montreal, Toronto, Quebec City, the Laurentians and Montérégie. More than 200 women a year are committed to taking action through the Let’s Start Up program. They graduate with a better understanding of their strengths and skills, as well as the knowledge and tools to implement their professional project. Women thus begin a new journey towards financial independence through entrepreneurship, a return to school or a more fulfilling job.

Major donors

See all our donors
CDPQ
Fondation J.A. DeSève
RBC
Succes Finder
Sanimax