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Meet Deola Gaiter of Girls Entrepreneur Expo in College Park

Today we’d like to introduce you to Deola Gaiter.

Deola, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I first begin servicing many girls throughout the Chicagoland area. In 2011 I founded Flowers in Bloom Project. This organization provided self-esteem workshops to inspire girls in the community. With the help of partnerships with local businesses in the city, we impacted over 100 girls in Chicago. Workshops and events included Self-esteem classes, etiquette, Bullying, Hygiene, and free hair styling services. With sponsorship and donations, Flowers and Bloom kicked off the Undies for Girlies Project in 2014. This initiative has donated over 300 sets of brand new undergarments to girls in need. Many teen moms of Simpson Alternative School have benefited from this program.

In 2015 I created Skin So Sweet products. A brand of body products designed for girls and young ladies of color. Most importantly, it was designed to inspire them and motivate them to live an “OH SO SWEET” lifestyle which simply means using your gifts; do it with passion, and create a life you LOVE from it.

In 2016, I launched the very first GIRLS ENTREPRENEUR EXPO. This expo showcases Chicago’s most innovative entrepreneurial girl’s ages 7-17 years old. They have an opportunity to be vendors and present their products and services to the public. It’s an annual event where hundreds of guests have registered and attended.

In 2018 the Girls Entrepreneur Expo had an opportunity to represent girlpreneurs in Detroit Michigan and is now making its way to a nationally known event. Collegiate undergrads ages 18-24 have been welcomed as well. Our goal is to provide a space and platform to support their businesses and brands. The Girls Entrepreneur Expo will now be servicing girls in the Atlanta area in 2020. On January 11, 2020 Girls Entrepreneur Expo Atlanta will take place.

Since the birth of the Girls Entrepreneur Expo, an exclusive network has been formed, The Oh So Sweet Connection (relaunching 2020). It is an exclusive network for young ladies to network, promote, and market their businesses. It is a chance to also provide resources for them to excel in their business.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
This journey has had its challenges. There are days when I feel like I can conquer the world and there are tough days when I just want to quit. The main challenge has been time management. Sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in a day. Being a wife, mom, and still working a full time job can be a bit challenging and overwhelming. But I’ve learned to be okay with my priorities changing each day. What was important yesterday will probably not be so important today so I adjust accordingly. I pray and trust God daily to direct my path.

Please tell us about your business.
The Girls Entrepreneur Expo is the space I’ve created to support and promote the businesses of girls and young ladies. It is an opportunity for them to be vendors and network with hundreds of guests and other business owners. I specialize in designing platforms for them to be seen and to shine in the area of entrepreneurship. Through their affiliation, they can have opportunities to be featured in blogs, local radio shows, magazines, etc. We are directly affiliated with girls under 18 years old. This year we have also welcomed collegiate undergrads ages 18-24 years old.

In addition to the Girls Entrepreneur Expo, I’ve published a blog called Girl Talk Suite. It is a blog to highlight amazing young business owners. www.thegirltalksuite.com

My exclusive network, Oh So Sweet Connection which will be relaunching in January and that will provide more opportunities such as marketing and networking
-I’m most proud of the fact that we cater to predominantly girls and young ladies of color.
-I am ecstatic that we’re intentional about focusing on youth under 18 years old.
-I’m proud that our expos consistently attract hundreds of guests.
-I’m also proud of HOW we connect with the youth. We speak their language and we’re relatable.
-We simply celebrate girls who are busy being DOPE and operating in their gifts.
-I love the positive energy that the brands exude. There’s a sense of pride that the young ladies feel once they come aboard.

We are set apart from the others because we bring energy, style, and contemporary flavor to aid in igniting more excitement in these amazing girls. It is an entire VIBE! LBVS. My goal in life is to help them sprinkle ALL of their MAGIC to create an OH SO SWEET life!

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
I define success by having the ability to consistently operate in your passion. My success is defined by my passion to be creative and to inspire youth. As long as I can continue to encourage and create space to inspire youth, that gives me pure joy. Being able to experience the joy in that daily is how I measure my success. Its what I call, living the “Oh So Sweet” life.

Pricing:

  • Girls Entrepreneur Expo Vendor Fee $40
  • Oh So Sweet Connection Annual Membership $50

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Harmie’s Creations
Jamiyah Keyes
Joshua Barnett

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