Access to Business Opportunities

 

The Access to Business Opportunities Project, a research initiative of the Canadian Centre on Disability Studies, the University of Manitoba and the University of Calgary, is in its third phase. This phase is the development of a strategy for the establishment of an urban delivery mechanism for the Entrepreneurs with Disabilities Program.

There are two goals for Phase III: to review economic structures that exist across Canada, for their overall suitability and accessibility for promoting entrepreneurship among persons with disabilities; and to develop mechanisms for urban centres in western Canada.

Project coordinator Colleen Watters of Winnipeg, in a recent interview, stated that her initial research is a review of different models of entrepreneurship that exist in western Canada. She cited examples such as programs for youth, women, aboriginal peoples, people with disabilities and the low-income group. Business resources found include the Canada Business Service Centre, the business Development Bank of Canada and written information provided by some banks. Watters suggested there is a belief that needs can best be met by separate entities — enterprise centres for women or young people, for example.

Dr. Aldred Neufeldt, University of Calgary, is the project investigator, and research assistant is Vicki Sannuto of Calgary.

An advisory committee has reviewed a preliminary discussion paper of findings. Focus groups have discussed the paper and are establishing working groups. To follow is a report on what currently exists with respect to entrepreneurial models in eastern and western Canada, and a research report outlining key elements for an urban delivery mechanism.

Watters added that researchers in Ontario, Qu?bec and the Atlantic provinces are preparing reports on entrepreneurship models in their regions.

CCDS FIRST NATIONAL SYMPOSIUM ON DISABILITY STUDIES

The Canadian Centre on Disability Studies (CCDS) hosted a national symposium on May 22 and 23, 1998, at the University of Manitoba. This working meeting focused on disability studies models, issues, current trends and future developments in the field. Feature presentations were made by local, national and international experts. CCDS is working closely with symposium participants to develop aspects of the curriculum for an interdisciplinary master’s degree program in Disability Studies at the University of Manitoba.

Featured speakers included: Dr. Karen Yoshida and Ms. Hazel Self, University of Toronto; Dr. David Braddock, University of Illinois; and Dr. Patrick Fougeyrollas, Qu?bec Institute of Rehabilitation.

The theme of the panel discussion on Saturday, May 23, centred on building partnerships, consumer participation and current consumer needs.

A detailed report on the symposium can be found on the CCDS website.

DISABILITY INFORMATION NETWORK: A CONNECTION TO THE WORLD

Where does one look when the subject is entrepreneurship for persons with disabilities? Where does one look when the subject is assistive technology that makes the computer world accessible to persons with disabilities? These and other questions can be answered by “plugging into” the Disability Information Network (DIN), a product of the DIN staff of the Canadian Centre on Disability Studies (CCDS).

The network provides information on employment — for instance, setting up your own business is easier with the help of the Entrepreneurship for Persons with Disabilities page. There are links to many other sites, including the Youth Opportunities Caf?. And a number of research papers have been published on the Online Electronic Texts page.

The Disability Assistive Training and Technology Centre (DATTCen) has been created to provide hands-on computer, Internet and World Wide Web training with assistive technology.

We welcome your comments and questions at http://www.escape.ca/~ccds/.

HOW TO REACH US:
CANADIAN CENTRE ON DISABILITY STUDIES
2404-7 EVERGREEN PLACE
WINNIPEG, MB R3L 2T3
TEL: (204) 287-8411
FAX: (204) 284-5343
E-MAIL: ccds@escape.ca
WEBSITE: http://www.escape.ca/~ccds

 

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