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Managing your business during COVID-19: Financial supports

The following are links to Federal government  support programs available for small businesses during Covid-19. If you need more information or would like to speak with someone from Community Futures, please email info [at] We would be happy to provide you with whatever information you need during this difficult time.

Canada Business Emergency Account (CEBA)

Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP) Guarantee

Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS)

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS)

Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP)

Regional Relief and Recovery Program (RRRF)

Black Entrepreneurship Program (BEP)

Support for Indigenous Businesses

Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB)

Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB)

Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB)

Wage Earner Protection Program

Reopening Retail

As we prepare for what the future of retail holds, there's only one thing that’s certain: the in-store shopping experience has changed irrevocably. When stores start to open back up, it’s important that retailers are mindful of how consumer behavior has shifted since the pandemic, and what services and experiences are now expected of all brick-and-mortar shops

In this three-part series, we'll outline

- essential technology and policies that retailers should implement as they plan to reopen their stores

- phased strategies for sta  management and training that align with the “new normal” following COVID-19

- what the future may hold for retail and some strategies for anticipating some of the ongoing shifts within the industry so you can be one of the brands that leads the pack when it comes to innovation, improved customer experience, and overall business resiliency.

Check out this PDF from Spotify: /sites/default/files/

Someday we'll get back to "normal", whatever that may look like. In the meantime, stay hopeful!


Succession Planning for your Business

We are pleased to offer training opportunties for business owners learning how to exit their business, including a specialized series for family businesses.  We have partnered with three content providers to offer a comphrehensive selection of courses and workshops to fit your planning needs.  Please see below a list of mutliple session programs and shorter workshops - all free of charge.

Click here to learn more about our content providers (Alberta Family Business Insitute, Commercial Ventures and Succession Matching) and what sessions would be right for you.

Mutiple Session Programs

Exit Planning (16 week masterclass)
Provider:  Commercial Ventures

This program will enable participants to gain clarity on the journey toward a sale and learn how to prepare themselves and their business to be operated by a successor.  Participants will complete the masterclass with an exit plan and clear direction on next steps.

Course Modules:

Understanding Business Valuation
Personal Readiness & Future Planning
Business Readiness in the Eyes of a Buyer (with Exit Options Analysis)
Timelines and Scenario Planning



Selling Your Business (16 week masterclass)
Provider:  Commercial Ventures

This program will help participants learn how to market and sell their business as well as gain clarity on the process of a sale and learn how to find a buyer.  Participants will complete the masterclass with a marketing plan and clear direction on next steps.

Course Modules:

Working with Advisors & Preparing your Company Material
Engaging Buyers & Maintaining Confidentiality
Receiving Offers
Timelines, Closing and Transitioning


Family Business Transition – In Depth Series (8 classes)
Provider:  Alberta Family Business Institute

This series of webinars will be geared to family businesses from all disciplines who seek to deepen their understanding and begin the process of transition planning. Transition planning is a natural process in a successful family enterprise and one that can (and should) be positive and empowering.  The main focus will be to give an overview of the process and provide communication and governance strategies that will enable business owners to confidently chart their transition plan. This will be supported by a comprehensive workbook containing tools, templates, and resources.  Click here for more content detail.  As part of the in depth series, participants will be provided with access to the Pre-Webinar, where they will receive the Family Business Transition online course and workbook, with the expectation that the materials will have been reviewed prior to the first session.

Provider:  Succesion Matching
More information and registration:

Ready to Sell a Business?

Businesses listed for sale or ready for sale can receive a coupon to list their business with Succession Matching. To receive this coupon, participants must register and attend a minimum of one workshop with Succession Matching (ABFI and CV workshops are not included).  The coupon is only $25 (value $2000) due to the funding received for this project.  Contact us if you have any questions.


In partnership with Community Futures Alberta Southwest, Community Futures Central Alberta,  Community Futures Crowsnest Pass, Community Futures East Parkland, Community Futures Highwood, Community Futures Lethbridge, Community Futures Wild Rose, CFCWest is pleased to announce the Southern Alberta Business Succession Project. This project will provide dedicated resources to help business owners develop successful transitions through proper succession planning.

Through this partnership, business owners located in these Community Futures Regions will have free access to a series of workshops and webinar series to help business and farm owners prepare for the day they transition their business.

Best of Crowsnest Awards

Nominations are OPEN for Best of Crowsnest 2021! The nomination period will close May 24th and we will then open up the voting period until mid August.
This is a fun opportunity to shine the light on some of your favourite businesses, make a business owner smile and to try something new.
* Nominations must be for current local businesses/attractions in Crowsnest Pass and appropriate to the category they are being nominated for.


Kudos to all the winners and nominees of the 2020 Best of Crowsnest. And thanks to The Crowsnest Pass Chamber of Commerce Association for this great opportunity to celebrate our amazing businesses. Crowsnest Pass is so lucky to have you!

Succession Planning Project

Community Futures Crowsnest Pass is partnering witth other CF offices and outside vendors to offer a number of workshops and webinars to rural business owners who are looking at transitioning out of their respective businesses within the foreseeable future, either via a family transition or a sale to an unrelated party.

These sessions will:

  • Raise awareness of an owner's need to plan an exit strategy
  • Increase succession planning knowiedge in our rural entrepreneurs
  • Provide new resources such as access to succession planning specialists, and a low-cost web-based platform to sell their business on
  • Prevent small businesses in the community from shutting down
  • Attract new entrepreneurs into the participaitng partner's regions.

    This project aims to raise awareness of the issue and educate business owners and their 'circle of influence' to provide access to additional resources. We endeavour to create tangible results, most notably by seeing transition to new owners and remaining part of our local economy.

    If you are planning to sell your business in the next few years, these sessions have what you need to know to get you on the right track to sell your business. Sign up today at:


Workplace Guidance for Alberta's Reopening from COVID-19

As Alberta continues reopening, this is a good source for industry specific Information and clarification Click on this link for businesses, including general guidance, guidance by sector, planning, and FAQs:

Resources for Business Leaders Covid-19

Here's a very good link for Resources for Business Leaders, updated daily. Helping understand the challenges and opportunities associated with running your business operations during the COVID-19 outbreak.

COVID-19 Resources for Businesses

Stay up to date by frequently checking provincial, national and international websites.

Social distancing measures

Please do your part to keep our community and your business safe by following these guidelines from the Government of Canada:
Social distancing standards are that individuals maintain a spacing of 2 meters apart.
Businesses with staff lunchrooms, boardrooms, etc. need to adhere to social distancing. Consider rotating lunch breaks to maintain social distancing.
Offices should have employees work from home whenever possible.
Home-based businesses do not have occupancy limits, but are directed to follow the social spacing guidelines set by the Government of Canada, including minimizing capacity so that individuals can remain two meters apart.
Please understand Canada's priority right now is to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
We understand these restrictions add complexities and challenges to your business operations, and we thank you for your understanding.

Financial assistance

Assistance to entreprenuers provided by BDC through small business loans, working capital loans and purchase order financing. BDC support

Emergency Financial Assistance
Government of Alberta financial assistance for unexpected emergencies (for all Albertans, not specific to businesses)

Employment Insurance (EI)
Sickness benefits provide up to 15 weeks of income replacement and is available to eligible claimants who are unable to work because of illness, injury or quarantine, to allow them time to restore their health and return to work. Canadians quarantined can apply for Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits.

Work-Sharing Program
Program to help employers and employees avoid layoffs when there is a temporary reduction in the normal level of business activity that is beyond the control of the employer.

Employees - Canada Labour Code
Information about employer responsibilities and employee rights under the Canada Labour Code.

Maintaining business operations


  • Use best practices to prevent and mitigate the spread of COVID-19, at home and at work.
  • Actively encourage anyone who is feeling ill to stay home and away from others.
  • Use and encourage good hygiene practices, such as frequent handwashing and avoiding touch.
  • Consider additional social distancing measures, such as working remotely.


  • Ensure your business is prepared to handle a potential case or business disruption, including accessing available government resources to mitigate potential financial impacts to your employees and your business.
  • Review or create a Business Continuity Plan for your organization, ensuring it contains:
  • Process to follow if an employee becomes ill;
  • Policies around travel;
  • Policies around sick leave;
  • How to mitigate risk to essential business functions can continue; and
  • Internal and external communications plans.


  • Follow all public health guidelines if you, or a member of your team, is experiencing symptoms, in order to ensure the safety of your workforce and your workspace.
  • Call Health Link at 8-1-1 for instructions if you, or a member of your team, is experiencing symptoms such as fever, cough, difficulty breathing and have travelled outside of Canada, or were exposed to someone who has COVID-19.
  • Website: Alberta Health Link


  • Consider how you can support your immediate community through the outbreak
  • Offer and provide support to employees and coworkers who are at home.
  • Consider whether your organization can provide goods or services to assist those in self-isolation (ie: grocery delivery, online or telephone counselling, internet services).
  • Guidelines: Self-Isolation Information Sheet


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Community Futures Crowsnest Pass
12501 - 20 Avenue
Box 818
Blairmore, AB T0K 0E0


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