Community Futures South Fraser (CFSF) is a not-for-profit Corporation funded by the Federal Government through Western Economic Diversification.
Our purpose and passion is to promote economic development and job creation through advisory services and capital investment in the Chilliwack and Abbotsford region.
We are one of 34 offices across the province and 266 across Canada that have been in existence for just over 25 years.
We also deliver a Self Employment Program in Chilliwack, Hope and Agassiz.
What We Do
We provide basic business advisory services including free one-on-one coaching conversations for small to medium-sized business owners in Chilliwack and Abbotsford. If you’re wanting to grow your business in a specific way, we have a specialist that can help.
We provide business loans to early stage businesses and those businesses that are unable to meet the equity or experience requirements of other lenders. We also receive referrals from other financial institutions. We differ from BDC in that we use residential property as equity and we are willing to approve very small loans, i.e., less than $1,000.
We deliver the Self Employment Program in Chilliwack, Hope and Agassiz. The Self Employment Program is funded by the Provincial Government through Employment Insurance. Our services include one-on-one business development coaching and planning sessions along with workshops and information sessions.
In partnership with other local community members and agencies and through our Self Employment Program, workshops are designed to support businesses in all stages including startup, growth and expansion, as well as in succession planning.
Board of Directors
They actively support community-based economic development with a range of products and services aimed at creating diverse, sustainable rural communities.
Community Futures South Fraser (CFSF) considers its volunteers one of the organization’s most important resources. Our Board of Directors consists of local business people who have extensive knowledge and experience of our local economy. Together with skilled staff, board and committee members guide the organization to its locally-created and community-driven goals.
Our board members are individuals that aspire to contribute to the community in ways that reflect broadly held values, have a meaningful impact, draw on unique strengths as a corporation, and reinforce our community economic development objectives.
Interested in becoming a board member?
Applications for board member positions are continuously accepted. Please visit our ‘Join Us’ page or click here to learn more about becoming a board member.
Current Board of Directors
Nicole Read, General Manager – Nicole was raised on a dairy farm in the local community of Chilliwack and was a part of her parents’ family-owned retail dairy store since she was 7 years old. At 22 she managed her family’s retail sports store and at 25, Nicole started her first business in the hospitality industry doing sales and marketing for hotels in different markets throughout BC and Alberta.
Other entrepreneurial adventures included contract work for employment programs, on-line vacation home rentals, restaurant owner of an upper casual steakhouse, and a temporary to permanent employment staffing agency. Nicole has worked closely with Community Futures South Fraser for over 6 years as a service provider to GT Hiring Solutions whom Nicole was the Service Delivery Manager of the Lower Mainland contract. Nicole is very passionate about building community as well as helping entrepreneurs grow and develop their business.
Nicole is deeply rooted to the Rotary Club of Chilliwack and the Ann Davis Society in Chilliwack allowing her to give back to the community that has given her so many opportunities.
Teresa Pippus, Self-Employment Program Manager – Teresa has trained and coached entrepreneurs for more than 20 years and has assisted over 1000 people to start their own small or micro-businesses.
After owning 4 successful hospitality industry businesses and creating and delivering employee/customer retention workshops for over 15 years she realizes one important principle – happiness is profitable. She is known as a customer service and marketing guru and has a passion and intuition for helping people move forward.
Teresa is a sought after speaker and workshop leader for amazing, authentic, and adventurous customer service. She lives in beautiful Fort Langley with her daughter Arden.
Annette Borrows, Vocational Rehab Consultant – Annette has been serving people with disabilities towards employment since 1998.
Working with several funding agencies such as Fraser Health, Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation, Service Canada, Neil Squire and CLBC has given Annette a wide variety of experiences in assisting people towards recovery and breaking down barriers that people with disabilities face in the workforce. Annette also teaches the Supported Employment Series through Douglas College and the Okanagan University College, a curriculum that she developed from her experiences.
Annette also serves on several boards such as the Focus Disability Network Society, Canadian Association for Supported Employment, the Creative Centre Society, and the Rotary at Work project.
Tonya is passionate about working with entrepreneurs and helping them grow their business. Tonya is actively involved in the Chilliwack Community. She sits on the board of The Chilliwack Community Arts Council, delivers soup with the Bowls of Hope and is part of the Rotary Club of Chilliwack Mt. Cheam.
Tonya, her husband and two children live on a 5-acre tree farm in Rosedale. She enjoys camping, hiking, and spending time with family and friends.
Sharon Unger, Director of First Impressions & Office Admin. Sharon’s joy is to see and help individuals move forward in their lives and businesses.
She lives in Abbotsford with her entrepreneurial husband who has served Abbotsford for over 30 years as a custom millworker. She has three grown beautiful daughters. She enjoys business/leisure walks and yoga.
Come into the office and she’ll be sure to offer you a coffee or tea and, if you make it at just the right time, a Matcha with almond milk!
Bob Hahn, CPA, CMA, Business Analyst – Bob brings a wealth of business and technical experience to Community Futures South Fraser. Bob was previously the General Manager of a manufacturing company in the concrete industry and Senior Geophysicist/ Group Leader with resource companies in the energy sector. At CFSF, Bob has worked in the roles of Office Manager, Operations and Finance Manager, and mostly recently Business Analyst. Bob maintains our Loans Portfolio, Human Resources, and Western Economic Diversification (WD) reporting. A recent achievement for Bob was his CPA, CMA designation. Bob’s joy in life is his family including eight wonderful grandchildren. Hobbies include speedcubing, guitar, and piano. Favorite saying – measure twice, cut once.