International Fine Arts Artist partners with Startup Moncton

MONCTON, NB: International Fine Arts Artist, Futong Kang, partnered with Startup Moncton to raise funds for Greater Moncton entrepreneurs.

Kang, a Fine Arts and Design Major from Beijing Union University, China, solidified her skills in fine arts, drawing, painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture, and paper carving and digital media.

“My art is about the emotions and is inspired by nature and the elements in our surroundings,” said Kang. “My desire is to provide art therapy workshops for individuals with severe anxiety and mental health challenges”. Kang has long been an advocate of emotional healing through painting and creative expression.

As a Fine Arts teacher, her four years with Beijing Fangshan Vocational School China, solidified her passion for creative arts that she is now turning into a life-long career.

Presently, Kang is a student at Crandall University, Moncton, challenging her own boundaries in Fine Art and education.

‘We are very grateful that Futong so generously partnered with Startup Moncton and was a part of our January 18 Launch,” said Debbie Collins, Founder Startup Moncton. “Through her commitment to entrepreneurial startups, Futong raised $400”.

“Live painting” or “performance painting” can be planned or improvisational art where artists create a painting in real time in a public setting where guests can interact with the artist. Often, live painting is of a musical event, cultural event, corporate party, wedding, or some sort of gathering.

Along with live painting, Kang also does art commissions, portraits, animals, and landscape. Her art studio is at 168 Edgett Ave, Moncton
Her works can be viewed at and Facebook/ Instagram: futongkang


Futong Kang
Studio Address: 168 Edgett Ave, Moncton, NB, E1C7B5
Tell: (506) 875-9082
Facebook/ Instagram: futongkang
Citizenship: Chinese

Debbie Collins
Startup Moncton Founder

Dartmouth Lounge to be the First Cat Cafe in Atlantic Canada

Dartmouth Lounge to be the First Cat Cafe in Atlantic Canada
Jan 12, 2018by Inda Intiar

Lily Pad Cat Lounge’s first cat, Violet, observing her surrounding. Image: Submitted.
DARTMOUTH – Jody Godin is turning her love for animals and desire to help solve the Halifax area’s stray cat problem into a business. Visitors of Lily Pad Cat Lounge will be able to hang out with felines, have a coffee and see if they feel comfortable adopting one of them.
“I was always kind of thinking about it. I love kitties. And then [I saw] an article on Catfe in Vancouver,” says Godin. “They had to close for about a week because they were so successful with their adoptions, they ran out of cats. Once I saw that I’m like, ‘wow.’ I really want to do this now. “

As a child, Godin dreamed of being a vet. But realizing she didn’t have the heart to convey bad news, she studied business instead. Godin is now a commerce student at St. Mary’s University.

“I always wanted to have my own business, but I was never really sure what to do,” said Godin, who has three cats herself.

Now, Godin is set to open Atlantic Canada’s first cat cafe, a concept popular around the world and across Canada. However, Lily Pad won’t be a full-service cafe because of food safety laws in Nova Scotia.

“If it’s a successful business model or if I think adding that component would make it more successful, then maybe down the road I can eventually look at trying to fight changing the rules more,” she said.

Jody Godin, owner of Lily Pad Cat Lounge. Image: Submitted.

For now, visitors will be able to buy Keurig coffee, cold drinks and pre-packaged snacks at the storefront on Portland Street. They can also buy cat toys and supplies there.

Visitors can then pay between $7 and $8 per hour to enter the lounge area, where they can eat their snacks and play with the cats. Godin aims to have 10 cats at a time.

“We can probably get more than that, but after you get that many cats it can be really tricky to keep the synergy going between all of them properly,” she said.

The cats, supplied by the local SPCA, will have a room in the back to relax and use the litter box. Visitors who want to adopt the cats can do so through Godin, who will help handle the process and collect the adoption fees. All the fees will then be handed to the SPCA.

Violet, Lily Pads first resident cat. Image: Submitted.

“The great thing about the lounge is that the cats aren’t stuck in cages all day,” she said. “So, at least in the lounge, they get to kind of be themselves. You get to see cats that are comfortable with other cats when say, you already have a cat at home. Say you’re looking for a cat that would do better by itself, then that’s a really good opportunity than when you go to the SPCA.”

Robert Leigh, the owner of Moncton’s Panther Perches, made 19 pieces of furniture for Lily Pad. This included shelves, rope ladders and coat racks.

The Englishman started building pine-based cat furniture when he couldn’t find ones strong enough for his 23 lbs cat. Leigh thinks the cat lounge is a great idea.

“I think the concept is brilliant,” he said. “You can form a relationship with [the cats] first, because they all have different personalities.”

Godin is wrapping up renovations of the shop and plans to open the lounge to the public later this month.


Entrepreneurs Launch Startup Canada Community in Moncton

Entrepreneurs Launch Startup Canada Community in Moncton

Entrepreneurs Launch Startup Canada Community in Moncton
Jan 12, 2018by Inda Intiar

Debbie Collins, Startup Moncton founder and Dale Ritchie, one of the entrepreneurs involved. Image: Huddle/Inda Intiar

MONCTON – Entrepreneurs in the greater Moncton area will have their own Startup Canada community. Debbie Collins, founder of Startup Support Plus, is launching Startup Moncton four months after the city was welcomed to the national network.
“We were looking at [launching in] November, and then we decided let’s make it January so we know we’re ready,” Collins said.

“I think we want to make sure that we had a good group before our launch and it wasn’t just one or two people doing everything and have our name out there a little bit.”

Startup Moncton is an entrepreneur-led non-profit movement that seeks to bring together business people and community stakeholders in the tri-community area. It joins more than over 50 Startup Canada Communities across nine provinces and one territory.

Startup Moncton now has about 20 entrepreneurs and 11 partners backing it, including Opportunities NB, 3+ Corporation and the Greater Moncton Chamber of Commerce. The entrepreneurs that are part of Startup Moncton’s team are all volunteers.

“Now that we have enough people, we’re trying to structure ourselves with committees and what we’re gonna do and get a calendar for the year,” Collins said.

Startup Moncton wants to be the one-stop shop for entrepreneurs to find resources and network.

“Our plan is to give people access to resources, like minds, in terms of starting a business and wanting to make a difference,” said Dale Ritchie, one of the entrepreneurs on the team. “And also access to learning things and programs that are already out there.”

Ritchie, the president of McKenzie College, has been a businessman for decades. He said many organizations are providing support for those seeking to start a business. Startup Moncton wants to do the same.

“You almost see a groundswell [of support] for startups because it’s not easy,” he said.

“It’s lonely being an entrepreneur and it’s not easy, so you need to have other people that you can relate to, to talk about the problems and issues that you face. You need that support,” Ritchie said.

However, Collins said Startup Moncton won’t be duplicating services already offered by its partners.

“We want to look for the gap. So, if one of the entrepreneurs say they need more training in business plans, then we’ll look at our partners to see what they do. And if nobody’s doing it, that’s when we’ll say, do they want to do it? do they want us to do it? We can help make sure the gaps are filled for entrepreneurs,” she said.

Startup Moncton also plans to be the voice of local entrepreneurs on the federal stage.

“We go to Ottawa once a year. We do Startup Canada, and if there’s any issues, we meet with MPs to talk about what’s working and what’s not working. It gives us a voice in Ottawa,” Collins said.

Startup Moncton will officially launch on January 18.

Launch Party for Startup Moncton

A New Startup Canada Community Launches in Greater Moncton

Moncton, NB, Canada – Startup Moncton is pleased to announce its launch as the latest Startup Canada Community of business professionals and organizations to form in New Brunswick.

Startup Moncton is a grassroots entrepreneur-driven not-for-profit movement, bringing together entrepreneurs and community stakeholders focused on enhancing the entrepreneurial ecosystem within Moncton, Dieppe, and Riverview. Its vision is to create new customer and partner opportunities for local entrepreneurs, by giving them a voice and connecting them through inspiration and support by means of mentors and resources. The organization makes support and resources easier for local entrepreneurs to find by creating a single point-of-entry through Startup Moncton.

“We foster an atmosphere of inclusivity, welcome diversity, and encourage more entrepreneurs to act as a community leader,” said Debbie Collins, founding entrepreneur of Startup Moncton.

Startup Moncton is pleased to be supported by the following community partners: Opportunities NB, 3+ Corporation, NBCC Oasis, McKenzie College, CCNB, Telus, Université de Moncton, Investors Group, Greater Moncton Chamber of Commerce, National Research Council and the Moncton Public Library.

Through these partnerships, Startup Moncton hopes to provide value to the startup entrepreneur community by taking a leadership role to promote sustainability and growth of the fabric of the entire business network. Startup Moncton also strongly believes that a strong startup business community embraces all types of business ideas and aspirations – traditional and non-traditional, online and offline.

ONB has embraced the national Startup Canada model as a best practice for New Brunswick communities. The model nurtures the culture, the spirit and actions of entrepreneurship throughout the province. “We’re so excited to have Startup Moncton as part of this provincial strategy that helps local entrepreneurs,” said Raphael Albert, Business Development Associate with ONB.

Got a great idea for a startup business? Got an existing business you want to grow? Want to attend the launch party? Join us at!


Startup Canada Communities is Startup Canada’s flagship program, supporting and connecting grassroots networks that fuel a culture and environment for entrepreneurship at the local level.

At the core, Startup Communities:

Provide entrepreneurs with opportunities to connect with inspiration, support, mentors, financing, resources, customers, and partners;
Bring together local entrepreneurship organizations to foster collaboration, information sharing, resource optimization, and ignite new opportunities; and,
Connect to the national network to open up new partners, opportunities and initiatives to local entrepreneurs; grow exposure across Canada and globally; and have a voice in Ottawa.
Currently, there are more than 50 Startup Canada Communities across 9 provinces and 1 territory. Startup Canada provides the infrastructure to connect communities across the country to peer-support, advisors, funders and other important resources to strengthen the environment for entrepreneurship from bottom-up. Through the network, Startup Canada Communities are able to provide and connect entrepreneurs to the resources they need by offering a roadmap to local and national resources and access to national programming and events.

Startup Canada offers these communities a platform to advocate for the needs of entrepreneurs across Canada. Startup Canada Day on the Hill is a vehicle in which entrepreneurs’ challenges and successes are brought to the forefront and solutions are formed.

Meeting with Ginette Petitpas Taylor

On January 3rd, 2018, Dale Richie and Debbie Collins from Startup Moncton had a delightful meeting with Ginette Petitpas Taylor.
They discussed at length how the Greater Moncton Startup Community is involved in the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Ginette was very impressed with the Startup Moncton initiative!

Startup Canada Awards

Startup Canada Awards

Startup Moncton Travels To Ottawa for Startup Day Canada

We made the voice for Canada’s 2.3M entrepreneurs heard throughout the capital! We established the momentum and built the relationships necessary to raise the bar for Canadian entrepreneurship and innovation. With more than 7 events over 3 days – bringing together more than 50 startup community leaders and +2,000 entrepreneurial citizens, last week we made a difference.