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Made from Scratch

Marquesa Shore had always wanted to be a business owner but, until one casual drive through the mountains, she had no idea what that could mean. She had been earning good money in Fort McMurray, but lost her job during layoffs in 2014. When she later visited Banff, she was immediately inspired: Banff needed a women’s clothing boutique, and she would be the one to open it.
She applied to Momentum’s Self-Employment program and drove south all night to make the interview. In May 2016, wildfires consumed Fort McMurray. She was in class at Momentum miles away, worried sick as her boyfriend was evacuated from the roof of their house. She finished the Momentum program, writing a 65-page business plan while wrestling with insurance claims on their smoke-ravaged home.


Combine the well-planned Business Development curriculum, business coaching tailored to each participant, and camaraderie from fellow entrepreneurs in the program. Mix in Marquesa’s vision, focus, and awe-inspiring ability to turn struggle into success. As you blend these ingredients, keep your eye open for a buyer for the house in Fort McMurray, and a place to live in Canmore. Add perfect timing, and secure the lease on a retail space in Banff. Open The House of Angelica, hire three employees, and exceed sales objectives for the first month by 25 per cent.


From Marquesa:

  • Passion, drive, intelligence, strength, and tenacity
  • Love and strong support from family and friends
  • An air mattress, and the floor of a fellow Momentum participant

From Momentum:

  • A fervent belief in people who are serious about starting their own businesses
  • Innovative and effective Business Development programs
  • A vibrant community of participants and staff united in their passion to see each other succeed

Portion size:

  • 10,000 participants in Momentum’s Business Development programs since 1991
  • 60 new businesses launched by Business Development graduates in 2016

Download the annual report in PDF for more stories and recipes.

Blackened Fish Tacos 


Blackened Fish:

1.5 lbs tilapia fillets
2 tbsp canola oil
1 ½ tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp onion powder
½ tsp cumin
½ tsp salt
½ tsp brown sugar
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
12 corn tortillas


½ red cabbage, sliced thin
¼ green cabbage, sliced thin
½ medium-sized onion, diced
½ cup cilantro
Juice of 1 lime

Avocado-Cilantro Sauce:

1 ripe avocado, pitted and skinned
1 jalapeno, chopped and seeded
Juice of 1 lime
½ cup sour cream
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
Salt, to taste


  1. Combine the smoked paprika, garlic powder, dried oregano, onion powder, cumin, salt, brown sugar, and cayenne pepper in a bowl. Rub the seasonings on the tilapia fillets.
  2. Combine the Avocado-Cilantro Sauce ingredients in a blender. Pulse until well-combined.
  3. Combine the Slaw ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
  4. Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium-high heat. Add in the tilapia and cook for 4-5 minutes on each side, or until the fish flakes apart easily.
  5. Remove from heat and break up the tilapia into 2-3″ pieces. Distribute the fish evenly between the tortillas, and top with Slaw and Avocado-Cilantro Sauce. Serve.