GT Hiring Solutions Blog

Self Employment Program


The Self Employment Program focuses on providing you with hands-on business planning and skills development through business coaching and on-line business workshops over a 48-week period. From providing you with the opportunity to 'test the waters' and see if entrepreneurship is a road you want to travel; to understanding the fundamentals of market research, finance and sales; the program provides you with the key skills needed to plan, launch, grow and sustain your business. The goal of the Self Employment Program for all participants is to achieve self-sufficiency within the 48-weeks of the program.

The road to self-employment can be difficult and risky, but for those that reach their dream, the rewards can be great.

The Self Employment Program is a 48-week program consisting of:

  • Business Coaching
  • Business Workshops
  • Financial Assistance

Candidate Minimum Eligibility Criteria

  • You live in the Chilliwack area
  • You are legally entitled to work in Canada
  • You are unemployed and receiving Employment Insurance (EI), or
  • You have received EI benefits that ended in the past three years, or
  • You have received EI Maternity or Parental benefits that started in the past five years, or
  • You have BCEA PWD/PPMB designation, or
  • You have a general disability designation.

Is the Self Employment Program for me?

  • Do you have a business idea that is “new to you”?
  • Do you have an entrepreneurial spirit and are ready to work the long hours that being self-employed requires?
  • Is your business a full time venture? (minimum of 35 hrs/wk)
  • Do you have the technical skills and certification required to operate your business?

The Self Employment Program offers financial living supports during the 48-weeks for eligible candidates. This program does not provide start up financing. Participants must be able to make a financial investment in their business. The program funding is provided to cover living expenses while you plan and launch your business.

How does this service work?

The Self Employment Program is 48 weeks long, broken down as follows:

  • Phase 1 (10 weeks): Business Planning
  • Phase 2 (38 weeks): Business Launch

As a participant, you will have access to:

  • One on one counselling with professional business coaches
  • A wide variety of online workshops to help with your business planning and skills development
  • Financial support for living expenses

How do I get started?

  • Talk to your Employment Services Advisor to find out if you are eligible.
  • If you are eligible, you will sign up to attend the Self Employment Orientation workshop and learn more about starting the program.

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