Determined Young Millionaires launch businesses despite COVID complications
CHARLOTTETOWN – July 9, 2020 – “This summer, we have fewer francophone Young Millionaires than usual. And those who have signed up have had to make a great deal of effort to adapt to the new conditions and precautions related to the pandemic. But they are all as determined and dedicated, if not more, than usual to ensure the success of their small businesses,” says their coordinator Samantha Lawther.
“Our youth are now ready to sell their services – like dog walking – and products like bags made from recycled T-shirts, water bottles, campfire wood, crafts, birdhouse construction kits, flowers and pumpkins, jewellery and bath products.”
Lawther noted that this year, 13 youth are participating in the “Jeunes millionnaires” program, which is managed by RDÉE Prince Edward Island; this number is about half the regular number. In past editions, program coordinators used to make arrangements for the young participants to set up their sales booths at various festivals, carnivals and events across the province, but this year, most of these festivities are cancelled or changed drastically. There could still be some opportunities for them to participate in a few activities or to set up in some public places, but the youth will mostly be selling their products or services out of their home or online.
The coordinator adds that the variety of products for sale this year is a little different. Usually there are a lot of foods and treats. This year, participants were encouraged to move away from food products and instead focus on other types of merchandise. This presented the youth with a significant challenge – which they overcame valiantly after being trained in business plans, market research, customer service, product quality, budgets, marketing and promotion, and more.
The youth, who come from the general Evangeline, Charlottetown and Souris areas, each submitted a business plan and grant application to the program leaders. The program provided a maximum non-refundable grant of $150 to individuals starting a solo business and a maximum of $200 to partnership businesses.
Several of this summer’s 10 businesses (three partnerships and seven individual businesses) set up their own Facebook page to promote and sell their products. RDÉE Prince Edward Island, wanting to support the group, also offered each of them a page on its website. Their businesses, products and prices can be found on this online “catalogue” at www.rdeeipe.net/jm2020/.
Most of the youth will continue selling their products until late summer, others until fall.
Here is the list of this year’s small businesses:
• C’est notre planète (It’s Our Planet) – Ariane Arsenault and Delphine Corney of Charlottetown (reusable bags made from recycled T-shirts, hair scrunchies, freezie bags, iron-on patches);
• Chapman’s Firewood – Renée and Marc Chapman of Souris (bags of campfire wood);
• Créations JOGA’s Creations – Jolène Gallant of Abram-Village (decorated bottles, plants, bracelets, bath salts and bath bombs);
• Dog Walking Services – Marilia Vanderlei of Charlottetown (dog walking);
• Home Craft – Omar Boumahdi of Charlottetown (home and office decorations made from popsicle sticks);
• Home Tweet Home – Elliot Delaney of Cornwall (birdhouse making kits);
• Les Petits trésors de l’Île (Little Treasures of PEI) – Rémi Stevula of Bethel (key chains, magnets, bracelets and decorative panels);
• Snap Crackle Pop Fleurs et Citrouilles – Josée Doyle of York (pumpkins and flowers);
• Sophie’s Lipgloss – Sophie Hews from Belfast (lip gloss and bath bombs);
• Une petite affaire d’eau (A Little Bit of Water) – Olivier Arsenault and Victor Corney from Charlottetown (reusable water bottles, stickers).
PHOTO 1: Victor Corney, left, and Olivier Arsenault of Charlottetown’s “Une petite affaire d’eau” are selling reusable water bottles through their participation in the francophone edition of the Young Millionaires program.
PHOTO 2: Jolène Gallant of Abram-Village, through her company Créations JOGA’s Creations, produces beautifully decorated bottles and also offers plants, bracelets and bath salts and sprays.
PHOTO 3: Josée Doyle of York hopes to sell many flowers and pumpkins through her company Snap Crackle Pop Citrouilles et Fleurs this summer.
For more information:
Young Millionaires (French edition)
RDÉE Prince Edward Island