I hope you and your family are staying safe during social distancing with the coronavirus.
I am a ParentPreneur. Many of you know my story, but for those of you who don’t here’s a quick recap.
In 2013 my twins were born three months early and weighed only two pounds, two days before I started a tech startup accelerator to launch my business, WeMontage.
All while living 1,000 miles from family.
Here’s a pic of my son, the first day he was born.
The ensuing journey of being an entrepreneur and a parent came with a unique set of obstacles, many of which I didn’t expect. And unless people are ParentPreneurs themselves, they can’t necessarily relate.
ParentPreneurs have to be both present for their children and their spouse if they are married, and there is unique financial pressure to provide for the family. The financial piece is particularly acute if the business they run is a start-up trying to get traction in the marketplace.
The reason I am starting this foundation is to inspire ParentPreneurs around the world to be the best possible parent and entrepreneur they can be. This will lead to mentally healthy entrepreneurs, healthy relationships in the home, children who feel loved and supported, and more successful businesses. And all of this ultimately means humanity will be better off, and the world will be a better place for our children.
A few people asked why am I doing this now, especially in light of the current pandemic. After my ParentPreneur journey of raising capital to start a business, having children, running out of cash, the business shutting down, writing a book to inspire ParentPreneurs, getting divorced, and relaunching the business, a strong sense of purpose has been on my heart the last few years.
I initially thought I would start the foundation after I sold my business, but a Starbucks meeting a few weeks ago with friends inspired me to do this now. There is no reason to wait.
As an aside, if you feel like you need to create your dream job, now is the time to do it. My good friend, Mario Armstrong, has a new season of his Youtube show, The Never Settle Show, and a recent episode gave great tips for how you can create your dream job now.
So with the ParentPreneur Foundation, I will provide grants to ParentPreneurs around the world and we will offer them free and discounted resources to help them be better parents and grow their businesses. And finally, I will partner with retail companies to get ParentPreneurs distribution for their products.
The foundation is simply called the ParentPreneur Foundation and you can find it at www.ParentPreneurFoundation.org. I put up a landing page and am encouraging ParentPreneurs who want to apply for a grant and get access to resources, to submit their names. I already have people from Africa submitting their names, so I know I am on the right track here to have a global impact.
If you know a ParentPreneur or philanthropists/foundations with an interest in this space, or corporate partners who might want to be a partner to provide resources please let me know or share this article with them.
And please share this post on your social media channels.
Be safe out there.
James Oliver, Jr. is the author of The More You Hustle, The Luckier You Get: You CAN Be a Successful Parentpreneur. He is also the founder of WeMontage, the world’s only website that lets you turn your photos into a large, custom collage, on removable wallpaper. Follow James on Instagram @trepdad