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Smart Sweets founder on her new initiative to empower women entrepreneurs and $25K grand prize

It's a full circle moment.
Vancouver-based entrepreneur and founder of Smart Sweets Tara Bosch is launching an accelerator program-incubator hybrid initiative called Bold Beginnings which will award one of 10 young women entrepreneurs with $25,000 in funding.

The founder of Smart Sweets says her success circles back to a platter of sandwiches that became an inspiring metaphor for taking chances. 

In 2015, Tara Bosch was at the launch event of an accelerator program called The Next Big Thing, where Smart Sweets got its start. Near the end of the function, the young entrepreneur and a friend spotted a platter of leftover sandwiches. 

"Should we go take a couple of sandwiches and pack them up to take them home?" they thought. While they worried about coming across as rude, a group of men took the entire platter with them. 

Since then, Bosch promised herself to never hesitate and to always take that metaphorical platter of sandwiches.

Now she wants to empower other women to feel the same confidence in their entrepreneurial journey through Bold Beginnings

More than a $25,000 prize

The event will be a hybrid of an accelerator program, similar to the one in which Bosch got her start, and an incubator that will bring in 10 young women entrepreneurs across North America to Vancouver for a chance to win $25,000.

From making her first retailer delivery out of her Honda Fit hatchback to making over 100 million dollars in revenue and leading a team of over 80 people, Bosch found herself haunted by imposter syndrome, constant self-doubt, and intense fear. 

"How can I support other young women that are on this journey so that they feel empowered to know that they're infinitely capable?" was the question that drove the Vancouver-based businesswoman to create Bold Beginnings. 

While Bold Beginnings will award only one entrepreneur, the inaugural event will gift all participants with far more than money can provide: golden nuggets of knowledge that will help bring their visions to life, a group of peers that each can lean on for support, and, ultimately, normalizing feelings of imposter syndrome and self-doubt that are common among entrepreneurs, shares Bosch. 

"If we bring together young women who have big visions and empower them to know they are infinitely capable, then the magic and impact they will go on to create in the world is limitless," she says. 

A full circle moment

Applications for Bold Beginnings are now open until the end of August, with selected participants notified in September and the event taking place sometime in the fall. 

The event itself will be held at HootSuite– another full-circle moment for Bosch. "That's where I built Smart Sweets out of for three years," she shares. 

When it comes to who will win the $25,000 prize, Bosch explains that the entrepreneurs don't have to have a fully incorporated company or completed product.

"They'll just need to show that they've taken action towards bringing to life a clear vision," she says. "Just as important as the idea and the vision is the person and how they think about things; what their mindset is and view of the world."

With Bold Beginnings underway, Bosch hopes to normalize the fears and feelings that women experience throughout their entrepreneurial journeys. 

"Everyone that has walked before you has felt the same fears, the same insecurities and self-doubt. The only difference between those that succeeded is that they kept moving forward step by step each day through that fear and through the discomfort of those feelings," she says. 

Most importantly, never hesitate and always take that metaphorical platter of sandwiches.