Founder of Cheekbone Beauty talking in Timmins

A local organization is getting the story behind the makeup at an annual celebration of women in the community.

The Timmins Chamber's International Women’s Day lunch will be held on March 8, at the Dante Club, and it gives Timmins’ female entrepreneurs a chance to network and share their accomplishments.

“It’s an opportunity for our members to get together and support each other,” said Carmen Swartz, the Timmins Chamber business services manager. “When you come to the luncheon and hear the positive message, and you see others in the room that are experiencing something similar to what you are, you leave there empowered and re-engaged.”

The keynote speaker is Jennifer Harper, the founder of Cheekbone Beauty Cosmetics Inc., the first Indigenous-owned and founded cosmetics company that offers vegan, cruelty-free, and sustainably produced cosmetics.

The company also centres Harper’s Anishinabe roots. It works to better the lives of Indigenous youth by showing that they can be represented in the cosmetic industry and through charitable donations to organizations like Shannen’s Dream and the FNCFCS, the Navajo Water Project, One Tree Planted and others across North America.

“We were very happy to hear that Jennifer Harper was available and happy to travel to our community,” said Swartz.

She said that the event sees leaders and other business people connect and learn together, and it’s open to everyone.

“We have a lot of men who want to support the women in their office, and hear the message,” said Swartz. “We want to feature someone who identifies as a woman and is willing to share their entrepreneurial journey for International Women’s day, and sometimes you hear the ‘if they can do it, I can do it’ messaging.”

She said the attendees are representing many different communities within Timmins and the surrounding area, including Indigenous and immigrant women.

“Across Timmins, we’re seeing a diverse workforce and we’re seeing that reflected in the attendees at our events,” said Swartz.

The event will run from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Dante Club on Wednesday, March 8.

Tickets are $50 for Chambers members and $75 for the general public.

They’re available online.

Swaltz said there are roughly 200 people already registered to attend.

“It’s music to our ears to hear all the networking and connection in the room,” she said.

Amanda Rabski-McColl, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter,