Businesses Empowering Businesses Spotlight

Bethany Bender is our youngest Businesses Empowering Businesses Partner at just 10 years old! Read below to hear how her business has evolved and how she uses her small business to help empower entrepreneurs in northern Uganda to do the same!

Catherine and Doug Bender are amongst the 100 Greenhouse donors that send 187 new members through Seed Effect’s program every month. Uniquely, their 10-year old daughter, Bethany, is also a frequent Seed Effect donor.

When Bethany was just 5 years old, she went to a yard sale and learned people will buy things you no longer need. Unbeknownst to her parents, she promptly began selling her toys from her front porch.

Her father, Doug, recounts, “She had already sold a good amount of toys by the time we found out. We decided to channel her energy into selling something other than her Christmas presents. We gave her two tomato plants in our garden and told her that she could sell any of the tomatoes she picked. She sold enough to earn $70 that first year!”

Bethany was a natural entrepreneur with no shortage of ideas, so the Benders decided she needed to start another business. With the help of her parents, she started growing potted flowers and plants and learned how to budget and run a micro business. Her business started to grow and her parents encouraged her to split her earnings into three equal funds: giving, savings, and spending.

Bethany used her savings to buy her own nursery equipment and a lamb. Now at the age of 10, she has 3 breeding sheep, and 5 lambs.

Doug shared,

“As Seed Effect has long empowered micro businesses, often run by women, we could think of no better fit than to encourage Bethany to use her earnings to empower someone else to start their small business.”

After Bethany learned about Seed Effect’s work and the small business owners, like herself, that are being empowered, she was eager to donate from her giving fund to promote hope and opportunity for South Sudanese refugees and Ugandans.

But she didn’t stop there.

Her parents shared, “Last week Bethany approached us with a stack of $1 bills from her spending fund. She said she really doesn’t need any more stuff and knew Seed Effect would put it to much better use.”

Bethany donated the money from her spending fund to empower even more small business owners. Bethany plans to keep some of her lambs to grow the breeding flock and sell the others. Doug said,

“Bethany will actually be selling her two babies this June, and is excited to send you another gift!”

While Bethany may be the youngest entrepreneur supporting Seed Effect, we’re grateful for the many entrepreneurs who are also using their business to empower other small business owners through Seed Effect.

To read more about our other partners and learn how you can leverage your businesses to empower entrepreneurs in northern Uganda through Seed Effect’s Businesses Empowering Businesses, click here.

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Apr 30, 2024

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