PARO Centre for Women’s Enterprise is an organization that not only prioritizes diversity, but builds culturally diverse and gender analyses into all of their programs and services. PARO’s logo includes both French and Syllabic translations to reflect the diversity of the organization and the women they serve. At PARO, all women-identifying people are welcome to access our services in a supportive space. As a not-for-profit social enterprise, PARO collaborates to empower women, strengthen small business, and promote community economic development across Ontario.
The PARO Approach: PARO’s approach to supporting women is unique in that we meet women where they’re at. Whether it’s their geographic area, or where they are on their business journey, PARO’s programs and services are designed to support women wherever they are! Rosalind Lockyer, Founder & CEO, established PARO in 1995 with goals to create a program to help women realize entrepreneurial success on their terms. PARO began as a women’s community loan fund; today, as a multi-faceted women-centred business development program, it is known “as the largest and strongest women’s peer lending network in North America” and supports 180+ Circles across Ontario.