Community Futures Ontario Annual Awards

Each year, Community Futures Ontario recognizes the successes andimpact of Community Futures Development Corporations (CFDCs).

In 2023, Community Futures Ontario presented four awards:

  • Entrepreneur of the Year Award
  • Outstanding Youth Entrepreneur Award
  • Award of Excellence for Community Economic Development (CED)
  • Members’ Choice Award - The Members’ Choice Award combines nominees of all categories and is voted on by our members and the communities of the nominees.


2023 Award Recipients

Angels Childcare

Entrepreneur of the Year Winner

Community Futures Ontario recognizes Angels Childcare as Entrepreneur of the Year.

Angels Childcare, co-owned by Mostafa Heikal and Noura Elbeialy, has four locations across Middlesex and Lambton Counties – Arva, Komoka, Thorndale, Sarnia.

Angels Childcare opened their first location in December of 2019, offering 60 childcare spots and employing 20 people. The location created access to childcare outside of large urban centers where childcare spaces are limited. During the onset of the global pandemic, Angels Childcare closed, then re-opened and scaled up to address the childcare needs of essential workers. Since 2019, three more locations have opened, offering 248 childcare spots and employing 60 full time people and 15 part-time people.

Congratulations to Angels Childcare and to Community Futures Middlesex for nominating them!

Spectrum Gymnastics

Outstanding Youth Entrepreneur Winner

Community Futures Ontario recognizes Spectrum Gymnastics as Outstanding Youth Entrepreneur.

Spectrum Gymnastics, owned by Teagan Fitch, was registered in September of 2019 as a sole proprietorship to create recreational programming and gymnastic classes for all active children but specializing in programming dedicated to those with special needs. Within its first year of operations, Spectrum Gymnastics acquired 400 clients from the surrounding community and beyond. Spectrum Gymnastics has a team of 16, each personally trained by Fitch.

Fitch is a Youth Entrepreneur (identified as under the age of 30), and has a Bachelor’s Degree in Recreation and Leisure Studies with a Minor in Child and Youth Studies along with a Post-Graduate Certificate in Autism and Behavioural Science.

Congratulations to Spectrum Gymnastics and to Venture Norfolk for nominating them!

BizLink – Buyers. Sellers. Connected

Community Economic Development Project Award Winner

Community Futures Ontario recognizes the BizLink Program as the Community Economic Development (CED) Project of the year.

BizLink, a regional Community Futures Development Corporation (CFDC) program, connects new entrepreneurs with retiring business owners and supports them through successful business transitions, simultaneously developing successful entrepreneurs who create employment, maintain valuable goods and service offerings, and contribute to local economies. With proven knowledge and tools, the program confidentially and anonymously guides entrepreneurs through the full transition process and provides wrap-around support for the entire life cycle of a business. To date, the program has assisted with 79 successful business transitions, and trained and developed 1,187 people through coaching and workshop attendance.

The program was created and is administered by Orillia Area CDC, Nottawasaga Futures, Community Futures South Georgian Bay, and North Simcoe Community Futures Development Corporation.

Congratulations to the program administrators for the success of the BizLink Program!


Local Initiatives Program

Members’ Choice Award Winner


From left: Patrick Kennedy (Board Chair), Patti Tallman (Executive Director), Heather Reid (Program & Operations Coordinator), all of Haliburton CDC

Community Futures Ontario recognizes the Local Initiatives Program as the winner of the prestigious Members’ Choice Award.

The Local Initiatives Program (LIP) was created and is administered by the Haliburton County Development Corporation (HCDC), and provides funding and advisory services to Not-for-Profit Organizations in Haliburton County. The purpose of the LIP is to strengthen Haliburton County communities by supporting community economic development projects that are incremental (new initiatives or enhancements/additions to existing activities) and strive to enhance the resiliency and vibrancy of the community.

HCDC has supported 150 community projects involving over 450 partners and organizations.

Congratulations to Haliburton County Development Corporation for the success of the Local Initiatives Program!

About Us

Community Futures Ontario represents 60 Community Futures Development Corporations (CFDCs) - 36 in southern Ontario and 24 in the north - that offer free business counselling, loans for start-up and expansion of small business, strategic planning on local projects and community economic development in rural areas.


Contact Us

Community Futures Ontario
300 South Edgeware Road
St. Thomas, Ontario N5P 4L1
Telephone: 519-633-2326
Toll Free to CF Ontario: 1-888-633-2326
Toll Free to Local CFDCs: 1-866-ONT-CFDC
Fax: 519-633-3563


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