Isabella wrote this business pitch for a 100-day Teentrepreneur program which she was a part of during the summer of 2020:
Hello everyone. My name is Isabella and my company is hopeful hands. It's crazy saying I have my own company, surreal. After all, I am only a 17 year old who doesn't have her high school diploma. But why should education matter when you want to make a change? Change should come from the heart and the perspective you have on the world. So what perspective is mine? Mine is one of a sister who sees little opportunities for her brother, just because of his handicaps. My brother has a traumatic brain injury that has taken away a lot from him: his chance to attend college at the age of 18, the chance to play baseball at said university, the chance to go into finance (like our deceased father). It has taken away his dreams and aspirations. His opportunity to create a mark on the world. I wanted a chance to give him some outlet for change and other people like him whose dreams have vanished because of their disabilities.I wanted to give them a new dream. The dream of inspiring change throughout the community. My company works to provide special needs people with volunteer work so they can help inspire small change in small ways. I am working with the living and learning enrichment center, an established local business working on creating more opportunities for people with disabilities. This company has created jobs through a store, lavender farm, and summer program while also working to do more. Their store sells a lot of things actually made by the disabled people and sells the lavender they harvest too. There is even a coding class to help people get jobs from coding. My company would start out by volunteering at their facilities cleaning up around the property, painting murals, and caring for farm animals (chicks and alpacas). I will pull my customers in through the welcoming network of special needs services, including miracle league. A baseball league for people with disabilities. My company does not need money to continue because it will all be service work. In the future I hope to partner with other organizations, including the Detroit zoo, and also start a resume building class to help my customers find real jobs. In Michigan people with disabilities only get help in education until they are 26. In other states it is only 21. After that little vocational help is offered. Bottom line is people with disabilities often have less chance for carrying out their dreams and inspiring change. I am providing them a way to enact small change in the local community and hopefully help others find meaning in what they do. I know what service opportunities are out there after doing much service with my school community and local community, even enough to end up winning the timothy appreciation award for service. I am now in the national honors society working to do more service and am involved in mentoring middle schoolers through new horizons education. I serve my school by being executive student council president and work to better my school environment. In service I have found happiness in helping others and I think people with disabilities deserve a chance to do the same. I just want to thank Kelsey and Aditi for always encouraging me and my batchmates. To my batchmates: it was such a privilege to get to work with each and everyone of you. You are all truly amazing individuals who aspire to build a better world.