An unemployed single mother of three in Barbados, has her eyes on an unusual niche market as a business venture.
Thirty-six-year old Monica Harris, one of the 56 women likely to benefit from a Canadian-funded Economic Empowerment for Women in Barbados and OECS project, is passionate about opening a dog spa.
Harris told Barbados TODAY this morning, she wanted to have a business legacy that she could leave for her children — 17,14 and 9.
“I believe it’s a niche market that could do well in Barbados. We carried out lots and lots of surveys. Me and my sister together, we wanted like, kind of a family business and if it is successful, then it would be something like a legacy for me to leave for my children. So we have done a lot of research,” asserted the prospective business woman.
She said her research showed many people in Barbados had dogs they loved and would benefit from a spa.
“I have a dog and I love her. She is part of my family and I would give her the best treatment that I could give her,” Harris insisted.
She recalled having a number of meetings with the Barbados Youth Business Trust, Fund Access and the Barbados Industrial Development Corporation with a view to obtaining assistance in getting her business started and sustained.
Harris revealed that the meeting with BYBT looked promising, but she was experiencing challenges with Fund Access because she has been unable to find the three guarantors required to access financing.
“I had one (meeting) with BIDC, but they don’t help financially. They help in ways like with business cards and promotional material,” she recalled.
While not getting money from BIDC, she was happy to receive “some very good pointers about going into business”.
Apart from registering for training in IT under the Pinelands Creative Workshop project, Harris is also desirous of upgrading her skills in dog care. (EJ)†