​Receive Up to 20K from the OBIO Women in Health Initiative (WiHI)

The Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization (OBIO) has implemented a government funding program to increase the number of women working in Ontario’s healthcare sector. This program, called the Women in Health Initiative (WiHI), is aimed at improving the overall healthcare sector in Ontario. The OBIO’s WiHI helps women enter and progress in business-oriented roles within the health sciences industry. This is accomplished by subsidizing wages, providing a variety of on-the-job experiential learning opportunities, and offering industry-relevant training and workshops.

“OBIO® is continuing to foster innovators of new and innovative Canadian technologies while supporting the full and equal participation of women in our economy by offering programs that set women up for a successful career. Our Government is committed to supporting the health of Canadians and our healthcare innovators, and helping women entrepreneurs reach their full potential in this important industry.”

The Honourable Helena Jaczek, Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Agency for Southern Ontario

The initiative is being supported by FedDev, southern Ontario’s economic development agency, to the tune of $10 million. OBIO was established in 2009 and is a not-for-profit organization that operates on a membership basis. This new funding builds on the initial $10 million investment that was provided to OBIO since 2015.

“Through the Women in Health Initiative, we will leverage our in-house training expertise and extensive network of professionals, advisors and companies to ensure the career success of women participating in the health science industry. Our overarching goal at OBIO® is to ensure that the health science industry has the capabilities to help domestic companies access the Canadian market.”

Dr. Maura Campbell, President and CEO, Ontario Bioscience Innovation Organization

Understanding the Women in Health Initiative (WiHI) Details

The Women in Health Initiative, initiated by the OBIO, offers the following funding and eligibility criteria:

Funding Amount

Applicants for the WiHI program may receive up to $20,000 per successful candidate in wage subsidies.

Eligible Applicants

Company applicants for the WiHI program must meet the following criteria:

  • Canadian company with a presence in Ontario;
  • Offer a full-time position for a minimum of six months;
  • Provide the new employee with training and mentorship through the required OBIO®-led program; and
  • Provide the same employment terms, conditions, and benefits granted by the employer to their other employees at the same job level.  ​

Eligible Participants

For participants to be eligible for the WiHI program, they should meet these criteria:

  • Candidate is a woman;
  • Candidate is located within Ontario;
  • Must be legally eligible to work in Canada;
  • Participant is unemployed or within six months of employment start date; and
  • Has completed a post-secondary degree and is not currently a student.

Program Timelines

The OBIO Women in Health Initiative (WiHI) has a formal deadline of August 25, 2022, for interested applicants.

Government Funding for the Ontario Healthcare Industry

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