Back in October, 10-year-old entrepreneur and youngest member of Ryerson University’s Digital Media Zone Abi Smithson launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to raise $15,000 for her Toronto-based woman footwear startup, Love Sandal.
Explaining details about the company, Smithson wrote, “The Love Sandal was an idea I had this summer when I was enrolled in the Girls Learning Code Inventors Camp in downtown Toronto. I noticed my Mom had ugly tan lines on the top of her foot and thought what if the tan line was a heart, and the Love Sandal was born.The Love Sandal is not just about a beautiful sandal, it is proof that ANYONE, no matter their age, race or gender can do ANYTHING! Love Sandal is about chasing your dreams and following your heart!”
Not only did she attract more than 100 backers to the project, she managed to receive some attention from package delivery company, UPS Canada. According to TechVibes UPS Canada, surprised Smithson with an $8,700 donation.
UPS Canada’s director of small businesses, Paul Gaspar stated, “UPS wanted to do our part to support entrepreneurs. [Abi] has the entrepreneurial drive and creative ideas. And at such a young age, that’s remarkable. We were extremely inspired. I wasn’t doing that when I was 10 years old.”
Smithson noted, “Love Sandal is not just about a beautiful sandal, it’s proof that anyone, no matter their age, race or gender, can do anything. Love Sandal is about chasing your dreams and following your heart.”
Also explaining her drive to success, Smithson explained, “I like inventing because it lets me be creative and solve problems. I enjoy coding because it is fun and I get to learn a new language. My dad and I are always looking at problems and trying to solve them through software.”
In regards to future projects, Gaspar added, “We will continue to collaborate with entrepreneurs like Abi. The best part is hearing their story and their passion.”
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