Government Funding Success for Paris Kitchens

Matthew Mongeon

Paris Kitchens is based in Paris, Ontario, and manufactures high-end kitchens, cabinetry, and other custom designs for homes. Not only is Paris Kitchens a Canadian-owned business, but they are also the oldest cabinetry company in Canada. This Canadian icon designs and produces top-quality products sourced from other local businesses to stimulate and support the Ontario economy. Their manufacturing plant reduces their carbon footprint by being locally based and creates jobs in the Paris region.

Paris Kitchens started by looking into how they could address some inefficiencies in their workflow – they were able to receive recommendations on increasing efficiency; however, to make this possible, Paris Kitchens needed additional funding. Therefore, the organization hired Mentor Works, a professional grant writing company, to research and suggest government funding opportunities that would be a good fit for them and support the application writing and submission process.

Paris Kitchens was awarded critical government funding via applications submitted with grant writing support. The allotted financing was used to offset rising operation costs, streamline processes, and provide new skills for employees through training programs.

During their research, the company identified that the Canada-Ontario Job Grant (COJG) would be ideal for Paris Kitchens’ project. The COJG provides direct financial support to employers who wish to purchase training for their employees. It is available to businesses with a plan to deliver short-term training to existing and new employees. Paris Kitchens secured the grant funding via a successful and professional application that helped cover costs for their training project. Not only that, but a year later, additional funding was identified and successfully secured through a similar program.

“I’m happy to report that we were successful with our grant applications with Mentor Works, and we ended up implementing the new initiatives,” said Carolyn Iyer, COO of Paris Kitchens. “It was very good for us, and clearly, we had a positive experience.”

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses have required financial support but found it challenging to secure a successful grant or loan award.

As part of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan, the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) assisted businesses and organizations across Canada to mitigate financial pressures caused by the pandemic. More than $536 million of RRRF funding was delivered by FedDev Ontario alongside local Community Futures Development Corporations and other partners in southern Ontario. This support helped southern Ontario businesses and organizations weather the economic impacts of COVID-19, sustaining more employers for recovery and keeping more people employed—protecting more than 25,500 jobs. As with the COJG, this application secured funding that was allotted towards fixed operating costs.

But the financial support didn’t end there. Paris Kitchens was able to onboard youth workers last summer, as 15- to 24-year-olds were among those that struggled for work during the pandemic. Canada Summer Jobs (CSJ) is a program under the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy, which aims to provide flexible and holistic services to help all young Canadians develop the skills and gain paid work experience to successfully transition into the labour market. Paris Kitchens has had multiple successful applications now and continues to seek new opportunities in the future. Governmental funding from sources such as these can be a huge help to companies who are struggling with the current labour shortage.

“The applications are very administratively heavy,” said Iyer. “I truly do not recommend you do it yourself.”

As a Marketing Coordinator at Mentor Works, Matthew continues to help business owners by creating educational content on what Government funding opportunities are available to Canadian businesses.

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