Thank You Libro Credit Union

Libro Credit Union shares a piece of the pie with OIN

Before I get to the exciting news, on behalf of Ontario Immigrant Network and the communities that we serve, I need to say this: Thank You Libro Credit Union – for selecting OIN from a long-list of very worthy causes, and for recognizing the role that you can play in a very important issue: financial literacy and entrepreneurship for both Canadian and newcomer youth.

In early 2015, the OIN team wanted to find new ways to serve communities and populations in need in a lean, sustainable manner. Many ideas were discussed, and above all it was important to build on the expertise that OIN has been building since 2009. As discussion continued, we finally landed on the FLY (Financial Literacy for Youth) App. Technology is not new to OIN, but a project like this did require some new key partners to make sure that it would be successful.

First, we needed a partner with expertise in reaching ethno-cultural populations en masse. Viva Canada has an excellent track record of doing just this, through publications and cultural events. Second, OIN needed trusted partners with the technical skills required to build an app that could reach leading platforms. This is where Web Alchemists and Mika Software came to the table. OIN worked with its key stakeholders to start detailing the features that would be expected from an app that would make financial literacy and entrepreneurship resources accessible, engaging, and fun to youth. This process was painstaking, and led to some great ideas. You can view the preliminary results here.

The partners that have come together to assist us are impressive, but this in itself was not enough; the final piece of the puzzle was a trusted partner who could understand the importance of our vision, and that would be willing to financially support a shift within our organization. This is where Libro Credit Union demonstrated support for our work by selecting OIN as a successful applicant in its Prosperity Fund Grant.

Thanks to Libro and its selecting committee, OIN was awarded $19,800 which will be used to fund the initial release of its FLY App. Rodolfo Martinez (OIN) and Bartlomiej Mika (Mika Software) were fortunate enough to receive the good news in person on October 21st, 2015. We received our piece of this great pie (pictured below) as well as some delicious, locally baked pie!


Thanks again Libro – we won’t let you, or our youth, down.

-Rodolfo Martinez, Project Manager
Ontario Immigrant Network

Sarnia-Lambton Business Succession Workshop

Here is a great event coming up thanks to the great team at the Sarnia-Lambton Chamber of Commerce. I am delighted to e presenting, and I hope that if you are a business owner in Lambton County, that you will take the time to join us.

Sarnia Lambton Chamber Business Succession Workshop

Digital Napkin: Sarnia-Lambton’s Entrepreneur Community

Digital Napkin - Sarnia-Lambton's Entrepreneur Community

From Digital Napkin

Entrepreneurship in Sarnia Lambton is booming. The area has thousands of entrepreneurial businesses.
This is something that we in Sarnia Lambton often forget and something that those outside the area simply don’t know about.
Entrepreneurs are everywhere in Sarnia Lambton. They are in agriculture and industry. They are in services and sales. They are young and old. They are creative. The diversity of the entrepreneur community reflects the diversity of the Sarnia Lambton economy.

We hope to inspire Sarnia Lambton with stories from the entrepreneurs in our midst. We hope to show that Sarnia Lambton is more than just beautiful beaches, challenging golf courses and a caring community.

Sarnia Lambton is the home of opportunity, entrepreneurship and business in Ontario.
It’s time for us to tell our story.

Are you an Entrepreneur?
Do you want your story told? All you have to do is contact the Digital Napkin and we will interview your to capture the story behind your business.
What’s in it for you?

The Digital Napkin is viewed by hundreds of people from the Sarnia Lambton area, the local region and across North America every month.
Your story will be told to a large audience. It may be the subject of further coverage. Most importantly, your story will be a key part of our effort to have Sarnia Lambton be seen as the entrepreneurial and economic powerhouse that it is.

Our New Website!

Ontario Immigrant Network Logo
New OIN logo –

Welcome to the new

Our new website – – has been revamped to better reflect our desire to better support our goal of connecting immigrant entrepreneurs to business succession opportunities. By working with key stakeholders,
we aim to make rural communities sustainable by helping them to attract and retain immigrant entrepreneurs.
This goal represents the culmination of 18 months of research under a Labour market Partnership, funded by the Ontario Ministry of Training Colleges and Universities.

While our LMP has concluded, we are able to continue our work with the support of the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF). Through OTF funding, Ontario Immigrant Network will be able to continue its pilot program in Lambton County. In collaboration with the Sarnia-Lambton Econic Partnership, the Sarnia-Lambton LIP, the Sarnia-Lambton Workforce Development Board, the Southwest Economic Alliance, and others, we will build a program that will take skilled, educated and experienced immigrants, and connect them to business succession opportunities that maximize their human capital.

This site is quite a bit different from our initial site – which is still available here – as it is meant to be an example of a web portal that could be used by an economic development agency of other stakeholder to promote their community, immigrant success stories and business succession opportunities. This new layout (and some new features) are very much a work in progress. I welcome any feedback that you may have, as we move from an informational website to a platform that is interactive, and ultimately a call to action.

Rodolfo Martinez
Project Manager, Ontario Immigrant Network