A Safe Haven Foundation Hosted Women Veterans Entrepreneurship Event

Women’s Business Development Center and Illinois Veterans Administration partnered with A Safe Haven

April 15, 2013, Chicago, IL—A Safe Haven Foundation partnered with the Women’s Business Development Center, the Illinois Veterans Administration, and other businesses and foundations to host an Entrepreneurship Program for women veterans, the fastest growing sub-group of veterans in the country.  Since a new generation of female veterans is emerging—78% are under the age of 40—the “Women Vetrepreneurship Program,” offers a series of workshops to meet the employment needs of this segment of the population. The event series was hosted today at A Safe Haven Foundation.

“The collaboration between the Women’s Business Development Center, the Illinois Veterans Administration and A Safe Haven is a wonderful opportunity forvets.event.women veterans to get services they need to start their own business,” says Liz Gardner, Director of Community Relations and Corporate Initiatives at Women’s Business Development Center. “I encourage everyone to participate in the program.”

In Illinois, there are 67,290 women veterans. The WBDC, in partnership with the Illinois Department of Veteran Affairs (IDVA), created the program to provide resources to women veterans in pursuit of self-employment or business ownerships as a pathway to economic security. The program aims to meet both business development and social service needs of women veterans.

“It is a perfect opportunity for women veterans that are interested in starting their own business to come and learn about the available services and resources uniquely designed to help women veterans realize their dreams,” said Neli Vazquez-Rowland, President of A Safe Haven Foundation.

The program highlights include business development training programs and services, direct lending to eligible program participants to start or grow a business, and no-cost childcare services during program participation. Women veterans and representatives from the business community, Cook County, the City of Chicago, and federal agencies such as Small Business Administration and the United States Veterans Administration are also involved in the program.

“The event provided me with a healthy thought process to learn that I’m not alone in my entrepreneurial goals,” says Maryland Anthony, an Army Veteran. “I now feel positive in my outcome, if I make the first step!”


A Safe Haven helps people aspire, transform, and sustain their lives from homelessness to self-sufficiency with pride and purpose. A Safe Haven provides the tools for each individual to overcome the root causes of homelessness through a holistic, scalable model. A Safe Haven’s visible social and economic impact unites families, stabilizes neighborhoods, and creates vibrant, viable communities. For more information on A Safe Haven and programs available for the homeless, underserved, and food insecure, visit www.asafehaven.org.