Norfolk County, Ontario, is home to dozens of real businesses started by kids in grades 6 through 12, part of their Student Start Up project. Kids can apply with a simple “business plan” template and may receive $200 in start up funds to kick them off. This year (2018), they funded 39 student entrepreneurs.
Each year, I look forward to seeing the list of creative ventures the students start. Besides the usual ideas of babysitting, car washing and lawncare, these young rural entrepreneurs have come up with some terrific projects. Because Norfolk County has a diverse agricultural base, there are lots of veggie and fruit stands, eggs and organic produce. Some of the other businesses this year are:
- fairy gardens
- henna tattoos
- art with origami, cloth, stone, beach glass, yarn, and wood
- organic health care products
Kids who turn in their final report can earn another $100 at the end of the summer. Norfolk County builds on the project by promoting it on their tourism pages and holding a special event with display booths featuring the young entrepreneurs.
It’s a great project, and one that most any rural area could put together.
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denise Levasseur says
This sounds so very wonderful, the youth is the only way to save our small rural community as the elders in their 80’s still run the business district which is all empty space except for a small medical practice, a small bank and post office, one junk store that sells used furniture which is so poor that it looks like they pull it out of the parking lots of other charities that accept furniture.
Its very sad, we have one gas station store, without any sort of prepared food, and a dollar general—
I am trying to think out of the box, the empty property owners want huge rents the building have been empty for years (no wonder) My thinking is the Great Grandparents might be inspired by helping their grandchildren to forget greed and help revitize the town or Just forget them altogether and start Tiny businesses with sheds in a location south of the 10 building empty down town..
These Youth Idea’s started the spark I needed to begin to raise My Crowd to plan this out for a spring Opening
Becky McCray says
Denise, I’m glad you’re taking a positive tack and looking for the opportunities. When you can’t use the buildings, use the sidewalks, the empty lots, the parking spots, sheds, trailers, trucks, and tents! All the best to you!