LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Several of Louisville's youngest business leaders will showcase their business ventures this week for the first 502 Kids Biz Week.
The week-long event, which runs from April 4 through April 10, features 21 different businesses led by kid entrepreneurs. These businesses will have special deals and discounts throughout the week and range from beauty and skin care to food and drink to clothing and accessories.
"We're bombarded with all the negativity that's going on," Tiandra Robinson, the founder of 502 Kids Biz Week, said. "I wanted this to be something positive so people can see that we have kids that are doing positive things in our community."
Robinson, also the founder of 502 Black Business Week and 502 Black Eats Week, said she was inspired to organize this program after seeing many of her fellow entrepreneurs share their children's business ventures on social media and wanted to highlight the drive and talent of the younger generation.
"I want them to be able to see that they do have the support of the community and that people are willing to say, 'Hey, you're doing something positive. How can I help you?'" Robinson said.
"It's really special to me because I'm a young entrepreneur and I get to have my own business and people are very supportive of me," Aaliyah Carter, one of the featured entrepreneurs, said. "So I just really appreciate it."
Carter is the founder of Aaliyah's Unique Creations. She started the business last year when she was just 10 years old, producing and selling her own line of lip gloss. Since then, she's expanded to also sell other products including beard oil, hand sanitizer, candle melts and purses and accessories.
"I got to make sure everything's wrapped up so it doesn't break," she said. "And then you've got to make sure the product is right and it's not messed up before you ship it out."
"She's like, 'I want to start this lip gloss business.' So I said, 'We're going to go all the way with it,'" Felicia Baker, Aaliyah's mother, said. "I knew she was going to be something special at an early age. I just didn't know it was going to be this."
Brooke Claycomb is another featured entrepreneur. Her business, Brooke's Handmade Scrunchies and Headbands, sells hair accessories and also started selling face masks during the pandemic.
"I wanted a phone and I wanted to make some money," she said. "And then I had a sewing machine upstairs."
Claycomb said she taught herself how to sew by watching YouTube videos. She's since expanded her products as well to include face masks for boys.
"Well I bought my phone, so it's pretty good," she said.
"One of the things that we really push for, because I'm a financial literacy educator, is for them to learn how to work hard for things that they want," Alex Claycomb, Brooke's mother, said.
For a list of businesses participating in 502 Kids Biz Week, visit https://www.502kidsbizweek.com.
For more information on Aaliyah's Unique Creations, visit https://www.aaliyahsuniquecreations.com.
For more information on Brooke's Handmade Scrunchies and Headbands, visit https://brookes-handmade-scrunchies-and-headbands.square.site.