WEYBURN – The quiet voice of Kamryn Doud filled the Weyburn Legion auditorium, as the 12-year-old Radville student shared about how she became an entrepreneur, earning a standing ovation at the end of her speech.
She was a special guest for the Weyburn Chamber of Commerce at the President’s Dinner and AGM on Wednesday evening.
Kamryn came to the attention of the Chamber after winning first place in the YouthBiz competition in the Grade 6-8 category, as she not only had the business idea, but is actively pursuing the business with the name Dzigns.
The Grade 6 student, who lives with her family on their farm south of Radville, explained the business idea grew out of her love of crafting and being creative.
“I like to draw, paint and do all sorts of crafting, and I was searching online for ideas. I came across earring templates, and I was really excited because I love costume jewelry,” she said, and she designed and made 20 pairs of earrings to start with.
Initially she gave some of her earrings away, but took a bunch to school to see if her friends or teachers would buy any.
“I easily sold my first batch of earrings,” said Kamryn. “This was last year, when I was in Grade 5, and I heard about the YouthBiz contest.”
She remembered that an older brother entered it a few years ago, and she saw a presentation about it by Verna O’Neill of Community Futures Sunrise, which puts on the contest every year.
“It was at this point I realized it isn’t just a business idea, but a real working business,” said Kamryn, noting she then had the motivation to look into the marketing of her business (including setting up an Instagram page), and drew up a business plan for the YouthBiz contest.
She received much support from her friends, teachers and family, and she set a goal to earn enough money to buy herself a dirt bike.
Kamryn noted that to date, she had sold about 400 pairs of earrings, and has a goal to reach 500 pairs by this spring, the one-year anniversary of when she started this project.
She started off with four design templates for earrings, and now has hundreds of design options, and is now wanting to move into other kinds of products, like keychains.
This was part of the reason she likes her company name, Dzigns, because it’s very open-ended and isn’t restricted to just earrings, said Kamryn.
She also likes the fact this is a project she and her mom, Erin, can spend time together doing, and is something her dad or brothers can’t be involved in.
“The best part is spending time with my mom. It’s something special for just me and my mom to do together,” she said.
Following the standing ovation, emcee Chad Bailey encouraged those in the audience to help Kamryn reach 500 pairs.
Jeff Hayward, who came up to introduce the main speaker, Paul Martin, said “Great speaker! You have an awesome future ahead of you.”