I want nothing more than to be a stay-at-home mom but finances can be overwhelming (stifling, crushing!) on one income. Since having my son two years ago I’ve been digging the recesses of my mind for a creative way to earn a few extra bucks while still making my family a number one priority. I now have a couple entrepreneurial pursuits on the go and for the most part I’ve been flying by the seat of my pants as I squeeze my way into the business world. In other words, I have no idea what I’m doing! I’m just doing it!
When I was given the opportunity to research networking groups for mom/female entrepreneurs I was giddy with excitement to discover fabulous networking resources for moms all over the Lower Mainland. Imagine having hundreds of working moms in all stages of their career path to connect with, learn from and be inspired by!
Momcafe is a catalyst by which role models in the business world encourage mothers in their entrepreneurial pursuits through internet based communication tools, meetings and seminars. Their message is simple: Being a mommy should not be a barrier to having a satisfying career, business, or involvement in the community. Momcafe is geared towards women in all stages of career development, from those who have a dream budding in the back of their brain to those who are well established in their career.
Momcafe’s are located across the lower mainland with regular meeting times throughout the year. Core events are finished for the summer but it’s possible to become a member now and get connected through Facebook,Twitter and the momcafe Vancouver e-newsletter. The annual membership fee is $99 plus applicable provincial tax. There is also a virtual membership available for $79 plus applicable provincial tax for anyone who lives in a part of the province where a momcafe is not established.
To learn more about the benefits of becoming a member of momcafe go here.
Enterprising Moms Network
EMN is another fabulous entrepreneurial network geared towards mothers (See moms, you’re not alone out there!). Members gather together at regular chapter meetings to learn about topics relevant to women managing a family and a business. EMN invites speakers to come and share their experience and advice from the perspective of a successful mommy entrepreneur. EMN members have access to an online forum and many other valuable resources pertinent to their lifestyle.
A typical EMN chapter meeting includes a 45-minute speaker presentation followed by a 15-minute networking break and finishes with a 45-minute small group discussion. The first meeting attended is complementary and can be registered for on the EMN website. There are various levels of membership ranging in price from $249-$415. To read about the different levels of membership, go here.
Valley Women’s Network
The VMN is a networking group geared towards all women in various walks of life (mom or not!). There are VMN chapters throughout the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley. Local chapters provide the opportunity for women to establish friendships and a platform for business networking.
The VMN has an individual membership fee for $35.00 as well as a $70.00 corporate membership fee. To apply for membership to a chapter, fill out their online form here.
BC Business Moms Network
BC Business Moms Network is a grassroots organization which encourages “Mompreneurs” to organize casual or formal business educational Meetups in their area. There is no cost to becoming a member of this network and because members control the structure of their meetings they can decide whether to meet in homes or public and more importantly, plan Meetups that include children! The idea of this network is not to spam other mompreneurs with business advertising but to provide each other with “tips, education, inspiration and motivation…”
There are two ways to participate in BC Business Moms Network. Become a member by signing up through Meetup which allows you to contact the organizer of the group and plan your own Meetups. BC Business Moms also has a Facebook page where moms can join Meetup and LIKE the Facebook page for a chance to get their business published on the newsfeed.
And One More…
Vancouver Mom regularly features an Entrepreneur to Watch, highlighting start-up and established business leaders. Check out this feature to learn how these leaders were inspired, where the vision for their business was birthed from, and how their early successes propelled them forward in their career.
This article originally appeared on VancouverMom.ca.