Twenty-five small businesses across North America were selected from thousands of applications across North America to receive some extra support.
Jobber Grants, for the second year, has distributed funds ranging from $2,500 to $15,000, totalling $150,000(USD).
Recipients from this year’s program fit into four categories: home service heroes who keep our homes safe and running; career builders who help hardworking people build meaningful careers; smooth operators who strive for high standards in every area of their businesses; and community caretakers who give back to the communities where they live and work.
Making that list as one of the 25 was Okotoks-based Double J Plumbing & Heating Ltd., which was named a recipient of a $5,000 Jobber Grant.
It was an enormous surprise, but a welcome one, says Jolene Shewchuk, Co-Owner & CEO of Double J Plumbing & Heating Ltd.
“I was in disbelief, literally across North America, one in 25, and I have heard some other companies that have applied for it and didn't receive it, and I'm like ‘we're just going to be another one of those small little small town Canadian companies that doesn't get this grant.‘
"When we got that phone call I was. I was excited. This feels like we're doing this, this feels real."
Individuals were selected based on written submissions, followed by interviews with a Jobber judging panel.
"In the application process for this grant, we had to outline our future goals, our future plans. What are we looking to hit? Three-year, five year. All that type of thing and what amount of money would help us really make a difference at this point to get to our next and subsequent future goals ... They send you this full detailed question when you make it to round two and it took probably 3 to 4 hours to fill out all of their questions."
"I thought ‘well, why not? It's North America wide there's no chance’ and then we got a phone call." ~Jolene Shewchuk
They are relatively new, having opened up shop two years ago but already have big plans to use this grant as a way to give back to the community
"When we had to define our goals that this Jobber grant would help us achieve, taking on an apprentice or journeyman was our first goal to get to."
"This goal helps us get to our next goal, which is a major reason probably why we were considered for the Jobber grant. We want to be really immersed as a corporate sponsor within our community here in Okotoks. We have a list of sponsorships that we are really interested in getting into."
Community was a big player in why they made Okotoks their home base.
"That was always our point in locating to a smaller community. Where our kids are immersed in all of the culture and the youth activities and the youth events and the schools here in Okotoks so we really want to support youth here in town."
Sam Pillar, CEO & co-founder of Jobber said in a release about the grant: “We are thrilled to recognize these people and to support their ambitions to build something out of nothing. The contributions of these individuals, whether they’re new to home service or industry veterans, are helping to create stronger and more robust communities across North America, and it’s our honour to recognize that.”
Shewchuk says using Jobber has been a game changer for them for providing top-notch customer service.
“We got onto jobber, jumped on that train and jobber has helped us ever since now.
"It was just part of their media to share that Jobber grant with us. You didn't have to be using Jobber, and I thought ‘well, why not? It's North America wide there is no chance’ and then we got a phone call."