What does your business do?
Eco Kids is a Social Enterprise providing learning opportunities for children. We offer creative classes in cooking, gardening and recycled art and crafts. We promote sustainable and healthy living.
We started out in 2008 in a small lodge at the back of a local garden centre. The business was started by founding director Michelle Myers via The Princes Trust and features in their book “Make it Happen” The Princes Trust Guide to Starting Your Own Business. We are now a team of three mums who all believe in caring for the planet. We wanted to give children the opportunity to experience a wide range of activities all focusing on health, long term wellbeing which were environmentally sound, socially conscious and sustainable. Our classes have received wonderful feedback from children, teachers and parents alike.
Eco Kids also engages with the local community on a non-profit basis in lots of ways. We have recently set up an allotment project where we hope to invite children from disadvantaged backgrounds along to expand areas of outdoor play and personal growth.
We are so proud of our business and the course it has taken, that we took the decision to license, owing to interest from schools across the country. We are currently working with a number of people helping them to set up Eco Kids as a social enterprise business in their own areas.
What made you decide to set your business up?
I have always enjoyed working for myself, it gives me the freedom to be creative and to identify areas where our kind of work is needed most.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
Not having enough hours in the day is our biggest challenge…so many ideas not enough time!
Also, being a small team we wanted to offer our services beyond our local area but we didnt want to compromise our eco friendly ethos by travelling too much too often.
How did you overcome these challenges?
We decided that our small team needed to expand to reach other areas so we decided to franchise, giving people in their local areas the opportunity to do what we do.
What advice would you give to other business owners?
Follow your dream, build up a strong network who support your goals… but most of all do it ethically!
What’s your favourite quote?
Dolly Parton, singer – “If you want the rainbow, you’ve got to put up with the rain.”
Who inspires you?