Path to Progress: A Self-Care and Strategy Retreat for Social Entrepreneurs

Take the weekend for some self-care, growth and strategic thinking. Join ICUBE UTM, Social Venture Circuit and a peer group of impact-driven entrepreneurs for this 2-day retreat to reflect on your journey, what drives you, all the hats you wear and what is next for you and your social enterprise.

Time to focus on your physical and mental health
Expanding on resources, skills and supporters for you
Telling your social enterprise story in a powerful way
Reflection on what growth means to you & planning for it

About the Facilitators

Zahra Qureshi

Zahra Qureshi is a Chartered Professional Accountant and serial entrepreneur committed to doing business with heart and building successful social enterprises. Zahra brings 12+ years of experience in the field of finance to help changemakers build confidence and strategic clarity for achieving financial sustainability, powerful growth, and positive social change. 

In 2019, Zahra launched Optinum Professional Corporation, a niche accounting and consulting firm, with a mission to reduce the overwhelm and stress for innovative businesses, social enterprises and non-profit organizations caused by accounting systems, finance concepts and impact planning tools. Optinum’s support includes outsourced accounting services, fractional CFO roles, creating and managing a social impact blueprint,strategic coaching for growth-oriented organizations, and securing and managing grant and investor funding successfully. Optinum is proud to serve a client portfolio working on 10 of the 17 United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals and is committed to helping them amplify their positive impact and sustainability. 

In 2020, Zahra founded Social Venture Circuit, a not-for-profit community network where social enterprise leaders can grow and learn together. Social Venture Circuit is home to the innovative Start with Impact coaching program, designed to address the unique, complex challenges faced by social entrepreneurs. Zahra’s coaching and workshops also include accounting basics for new founders, getting funding, the power of budgeting and financial analysis, and creating an impact blueprint. She also serves as the Treasurer on the board of directors for Common Approach to Impact Measurement, leading the path for better impact measurement.

Brooke Gordon

Brooke Gordon is committed to ensuring all entrepreneurs have confidence to achieve the company’s vision by continually developing their strategic leadership and management skills. 

As an Executive Coach, Brooke is passionate about supporting women who want a sustainable balance between career ambition and personal goals without sacrificing your health. She helps integrate strategic planning, leadership, administrative efficiency and personal wellness. 

She is the host of the Best for Women LIVE podcast, and proud volunteer with Soroptimist International, an organization that empowers women and girls through scholarships and mentorship programs.

Brooke is certified in ITIL and holds a Master’s in commercialization and innovation (MEEi), in addition to both a Bachelor’s and Master’s in Engineering Physics from McMaster University, where she was awarded a patent in semiconductor manufacturing processes. She is additionally a certified Personal Trainer and Health Coach.

Apply here by 11:59pm on November 3, 2023

Please note that selected participants must attend both full days – upon successful completion of all programming for the retreat, participants will receive a $500.00 honorarium to support their business.

In partnership with:

Indigenous business training program created by RedBird Circle Inc. in partnership with UofT Libraries, ICUBE UTM and The Bridge at UTSC

An experiential learning program that follows the school 3 semesters schedule, for anyone with a great idea who wants to make it happen.

A boutique-style remote program to support your business development and help you grow through one-on-one support. This program is open all year.

A student-led creative studio with intends to serve the prototyping and design needs of our ventures and small businesses in our community.

This 2-day retreat is designed to help you reflect on your journey, what drives you, all the hats you wear and what is next for you and your social enterprise.