On June 29th, over a hundred people gathered at the Frank Hasenfratz Centre for Excellence to honour the recipients the 2017 Rhyze Awards, and celebrate Guelph’s growing community of women entrepreneurs.
In recognition of their ingenuity, passion and perseverance, ten local women entrepreneurs received $1,000 in support of their businesses. Recipients ranged from advisory services to organic children’s clothes (see full list below).
The evening’s guest speaker, Dr. Anne-Marie Zajdlik, shared her harrowing journey from despair to hope in the struggle against HIV/AIDS. She spoke to the upswelling of support in Guelph that enabled her to form the Bracelet of Hope charity with its mission to eradicate HIV/AIDS in Lesotho, one devastated African country. Dr. Zajdlik’s message was particularly relevant because her work has exposed her to extensive global research clearly demonstrating, regardless of geographic location, that a country’s prosperity and the wellbeing of its people will always rise along with the education, empowerment and equality of its women.
“I was moved by Dr. Zajdlik’s message of hope and resilience. I think we were all inspired by her call to action to continue to improve the status of women around the world.” said Kristel Manes, Director of the Rhyze Project, adding “Our world needs us more than ever, and we each have to take an active role.” The Rhyze Award is one of many programs that have been launched through the Rhyze Project, a movement committed to advocating for greater individual, community and system level changes that will encourage wellbeing, flexibility and freedom of choice for women entrepreneurs.
The 2017 Rhyze Award Winners
Danielle Joworski, founder of The ATHENA Prodigies, a book, workshops and events designed to empower women and girls;
Deborah Keeble, owner of Edible Promotions, a source for edible promotional items;
Debbie Stanley, owner of Estate Transition Planner Canada, offering estate planning support and resources;
Angela Liu, founder of EZ Health Coach, providing diabetes education, foot care, and home care service;
Vicky Canham, owner of Fallowfield, an independent children’s shop offering ethically made organic clothing;
Kyla Poirier, president of Fourchette Culinary Academy, teaching interactive cooking lessons;
Lisa Harrison, founder of Milk and Thistle Paper Co., greeting cards with original illustrations;
Samantha Bolstein, owner of Research for Change, a consultancy strengthening the community benefit and social service sectors;
Sarah Stewart, founder of Open Minds Mental Health and Education Training, offering resources and services related to mental health; and
Danielle Gehl, owner of Root and Bone Herbals, handcrafted herbal culinary and body care products.
We would also like to thank Bite Guelph and Decadently Yours for their support in providing delicious food for the evening, as well as Fleuristic Garden and Flower Studio and Blooms & Flora for the beautiful centrepieces.
We are thrilled to recognize Katie Green for her wonderful video celebrating the Rhyze Award Winners.
Read more about the event in Guelph Today
Read more about our guest speaker in our previous blog post.