Port Alberni, Vancouver Island/Coast

The Owls Path

Port Alberni, Vancouver Island/Coast

We are The Owls Path Tourism & Marketplace, "Port Alberni’s first Indigenous tourism company & boutique with live carving gallery". We specialize in unique travel experiences & offer authentic, fair-trade, hand-crafted Indigenous products. Within our gallery we have a creative lab that we are using to help Indigenous youth create their own e-commerce businesses. We help them create clothing, develop branding, websites, and marketing material for their social media channels. Our goal is to create opportunities for more youth to have a chance at an exciting future. We have partnered with Kendal Netmaker to offer the Netmaker Academy to them and help guide their business into a world class brand. Our model of fair trade pays the artists the generous majority percentage of the sale. We share our platforms to reach a larger market while protecting their rights as the creators of their styles and pieces.

2 Employees

In Business Since 2019

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The Owls Path has been nominated in the following categories:

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Best Community Impact

What motivated you to start your business and what core cause do you support?

“We moved to the Island with our family, to a beautiful place where we knew no one. We worked locally in the hospitality and service sector before embarking on own business journey. Unfortunately some experiences as an employee, and also as a new entrepreneur, showed that racism was still alive and we felt we needed to do something about it; so that others didn’t have to feel the same way we did. We started with an idea and passion to help elevate Indigenous people and businesses in our community. We made ads showcasing our community and created a platform to shine light on Indigenous peoples, businesses, places, and events. We grew that idea into what our company is today, The Owl’s Path, a tourism company that’ll offer unique experiences through our trusted and awe-inspiring partners (once safe per COVID-19 advisory), as well as our boutique gallery that features, illuminates and incubates Indigenous artists and new entrepreneurs. Our core cause is to help create opportunities for Indigenous peoples.” “Something else that is very important to us, is Mental Health.” Joel prided himself with his intelligence however, back in 2011 Joel suffered from a major head injury which left him unable to talk properly and with high anxiety. He was sent to GF Strong Rehabilitation and with the help from his partner, he was able to get his words back, but it took time and patience. Over the years he has made an amazing recovery however still has down days from the lasting effects of concussions. Concussions are very common and many people face challenges living their everyday lives with them. “We want to show others that you can do anything you put your mind to, and offer our supports to help you get there.”

Why do you deserve to win the Best Community Impact award?

Winning the impact award would be such a huge honour and milestone for us. It would prove to our community and to us, that we can make a positive impact and be positive role models and supports to young entrepreneurs, regardless of where they started from and what obstacles stand in their way. We aspire to be change makers in our community while shining light on bright individuals who deserve to shine. This win would be more than just a win for us, it would be a win for all our partners, affiliates and everyone who helps us create opportunities. Thank You.

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