Calgary’s women entrepreneurs step up for the Inn

Realtor has joined forces with Inn from the Cold to raise money during the Christmas season

Mario Toneguzzi is a Troy Media reporter based in CalgaryCalgary realtor Kim Hayden has come out with another addition of the KNOW Book, a collection of 100 Calgary women you must know and do business with. 

And the seasoned businesswoman and local community booster has joined forces with Inn from the Cold to raise money during the Christmas season.

“Our belief is that together, as women, we can lift and rise,” said Hayden, who experienced a period of homelessness in her life, living out of her car with her toddler due to a fire.

“We know that many families right now in Calgary are struggling. Many of us are feeling the effects of a sluggish economy. We want to do what we can to help these families deal with the post-holiday stress of mounting bills and household payments. We want to help provide some light, both figuratively and literally,” she said.

The Calgary KNOW Book features almost 100 female business owners in the city who have joined together to motivate, inspire and give back to their communities.

Kim Hayden

“What the KNOW Book is an opportunity for women that have this similar drive and passion forward be it a non-profit or be it a company . . . We take these people and put them together and create a space for them to kind of create collaborations and work forward.

“There’s always going to be somebody looking and needing some help and always somebody who is able to fill that gap,” said Hayden. “The one thing all these women have in common – all of them – they’re not going to sit around and wait for somebody to provide them a paycheque, for somebody to change the laws or to lobby to get a pipeline through or any of this other stuff.

“We are all actively working in a forward fashion to create changes within our passion projects or our business profiles.”

Know Your Glow is a female-only private event. All funds raised go directly to Inn from the Cold to support its programs. 

“Calgary’s most vulnerable families need support all year long,” said Kim Willoughby, senior manager, marketing and communications at the Inn from the Cold. “But during big family holidays like Christmas, we really try to go the extra mile to make the season special, especially for the children.”

Hayden said Calgary is hurting these days due to the continue struggling economy.

“We are mothers, sisters, daughters, best friends and at any point in time because we’re also not risk averse . . . this could be us. So by taking a basic fundamental of keeping the utilities on in January and helping that could be the difference between somebody being able to survive and stay in their space and somebody who has to go back to a shelter or end up going (on the street),” she said.

“We basically want to pay it forward because we’re working to make a difference in our city. We believe in Calgary.”

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