The Self-Employment Benefit Program

The Self Employment Benefit Program (SEB) provides income support and management skill development to Huron County residents interested in starting small businesses. Those who are interested in applying for the SEB Program must meet the eligibility criteria and attend the 3-day SEB Information Session, held regularly at the Huron Business Centre in Seaforth. To learn more about the critieria and how to begin the process of applying for the SEB program, please click here.

The SEB Program has a duration of 42 weeks and requires a completed and feasible Business Concept (draft business plan). Over the 42 week period, a Business Advisor will meet with the participant regularly to review operations and allow the Advisor to aid in the growth of the entrepreneur's management skills. At various times throughout the duration of the program, the participant will be required to attend training sessions and workshops to further enhance skill development. The SEB program is sponsored by the Ministry of Training, Colleges, and Universities and Employment Ontario. Employment Ontario Programs are funded in part by the Government of Canada


The Ontario Self-Employment Benefit (OSEB) program provides entrepreneurial skills development support to approved participants to help them develop and implement their business plan and become self-employed. OSEB allows participants to concentrate on building a sustainable business by providing them with financial assistance while they receive business advice and support.

The key elements of OSEB are:

  • information sessions for eligible individuals potentially interested in OSEB;
  • orientation and support sessions to enable eligible individuals to assess risk/opportunities of self-employment and personal suitability, and to develop a business concept;
  • suitability assessment and assessment of the feasibility of the proposed business concept;
  • independent review of the feasibility of the proposed business concept and subsequent business plan;
  • entrepreneurial skill development support to enable approved participants to develop and implement a business plan (including but not limited to workshops, coaching, mentoring, etc.)
  • on-site monitoring of the implementation of the business plan; and
  • provision of financial assistance by the Ministry.

There are four incremental levels of assessment to determine participation in the OSEB program:

1.   Applicant Eligibility – Determines if an individual meets the basic requirements for further assessment and consideration.

2.   Business Eligibility – Determines if an individual’s proposed business is eligible as outlined in the Eligible Business Activities and Ineligible Business Activities sections.

3.   Suitability and Feasibility of Business Concept – Determines if an eligible individual meets the OSEB suitability criteria including if the proposed business concept is feasible.

4.   Provision of Financial Assistance – If an individual meets the eligibility and suitability requirements, financial assistance is provided in conjunction with entrepreneurial support.

As noted above, an EO assessment centre or ES service provider is responsible for completing the needs–based service determination and plan to return to work/ESP and referring participants to an OSEB Coordinator.

The OSEB Coordinator is responsible for determining eligibility (i.e. applicant and proposed business), assessing an individual against OSEB suitability criteria and assessing the feasibility of the proposed business concept. This is a more comprehensive assessment that focuses on both the individual and the business concept.

The Ministry is responsible for confirming eligibility (i.e. applicant and proposed business), reviewing the suitability and business feasibility assessment completed by an OSEB Coordinator as well as approving program participation and financial assistance.



This project is funded by:


SEB Program Coordinator

Phone: (519) 527-0305 ext. 24
Fax: (519) 527-2240




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Huron Business Centre
138 Main Street South
Seaforth, Ontario
N0K 1W0

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fax: (519) 527-2240
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