Stephanee Strickland is a wife of 30 years, and mother of two with eight grandchildren. She studied computer information systems and graphic design at Wayne County Community College. She is dedicated to the community at large and sees a need and has a mission to bridge the gap on how girls view the world around them while blossoming into women living life the way God intends for them. Read our interview with the lovely Stephanee below…
What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
In 2010, I joined a community policing organization “The Detroit 300”. What was disturbing to me was the fact that there were teen girls in our community being raped at an alarming rate.
Tell us about your business.
La’de Pronounced in French for (LADY) is a 1 year mentoring program for girls ages 10-17. Our mission is to uplift, motivate and empower girls to be productive citizens in their lives and community.
Are you currently running any promos/contests/giveaways that you would like our readers to know about?
Yes, we have an annual community event La’de Pink Bra-a-thon. The objective is to highlight breast cancer awareness and promote self-esteem by giving girls a proper bra fitting and care packet. After fitting, each girl receives one or two new bras and handbag filled with toiletries and more importantly, life changing information.
- C.H.O.I.C.E.Z “2016 World Changers Award”
- Mothers of Murdered Children B.O.D “2016 Dedication & Service”
- Wayne County Commission Vice Chair (Alisha Bell) Community Service Award “1st annual Pink Bra-a-thon 2016”
- Detroit City Council (Gabe Leland) 2016 Award of Recognition “1st annual Pink Bra-a-thon”
Where is your business based?
We are located Detroit, Michigan Wayne County.
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
Thinking of an extraordinary name and slogan that represents every girl: “She is kind, She is sweet, She has a Strong Sense of Honor.”
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
Having information tables at events, attending networking events and constant promoting of weekly workshops on social media.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
Having mothers participate and encourage daughters to be more involved in mentoring programs.
How did you overcome these challenges?
By thinking outside the box in creating events that not only empower girls but moms as well. There has to be inclusion of the two because the issues are still the same from one generation to another. We cannot continue doing things the same way expecting different results.
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
Someone else always has it worse than myself. All my life I’ve been a lover of and helper for the people in my life and community. It’s definitely the God in me. A Selfless Love for all mankind.
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
It’s not about me, and keeping that in mind at all times. There are no competitors when you’re a movement. Others do it their way and I do it my way. I want to effectuate positive change in the lives of girls around the world.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
That the vision I have will dramatically change lives and to stay on course.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
The advice I have for others is to believe in your vision and to do it just the way you see it and not allow anyone to say it cannot be done.
What is your favorite business tool or resource?
Talking about your business all the time even if it’s to the milkman. I find social media and the power of the inbox to be my greatest tool.
What social media outlets do you use? List them below.
Donate Paypal paypal.me/LADEGIRLS
Hashtags #ladegirls #shesaidyes #ladepinkbraathon
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
“Taking Flight” by Michaela DePrince.
What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?
Having others working with me that have the same mission to help girls in our community is a vital asset and implementing their ideas produce positive growth. The organization is in need of a grant/proposal writer, volunteer mentors and committee volunteers for programs and events.
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
The goals of La’de for 2017 is to find resources that will help achieve a building space for programming and a van for transporting those who want to attend but cannot for this reason alone. We are also working on our 2nd annual pink bra-a-thon, Glam Fashion weekend and a Citywide Rally La’de Speaking Boldly for all girls of color. We cannot do these things without community and business support and donations.