Meet Michelle Johnson, marketing professional, creative director, and culture writer and entrepreneur in the coffee industry. Originally from DC, Michelle has traveled across the country and overseas discovering new and innovative ways to push the coffee industry forward. Michelle started her first barista job at 19 at an independent coffee shop in DC and later moved to specialty coffee where she thrived in the complexities of coffee. From going to cuppings to learning how to train her palate, what kept Michelle in the coffee industry was the community of baristas she met along the way.
Gift Mungula, born and raised in Malawi and currently enrolled in the M.Div Program at Moody Bible Institute, took a Social Entrepreneurship class Spring 2018 taught by Brian Jenkins using the StartingUp Now: 24 Steps to Launch Your Own Business workbook and Skillcenter 3.0 (SC3) online platform. The class met Gift’s passion to launch his own organization in Malawi that would help develop small ministries operating alongside small businesses, enabling him to develop a business plan for a real estate business in Mzuzu City, Malawi.
Gift appreciates that SC3 is a multipurpose platform able to guide a person’s development of an idea into a complete business plan. He was able to watch videos and read stories of successful examples through each stage of business plan development. He found it fascinating that the entire content of SC3 was available in over 120 languages and was excited to find that the Malawian language of Chewa was available!
In December 2018, Gift was tasked with teaching a group of young adults in Malawi on the challenges that hinder progress in life and ministry. Gift has believed for a long time that the number one challenge in Malawi is that of not preparing. “Failure to prepare is preparing to fail.”
“I could not find any better resource for helping my fellow Malawians prepare to win in life than Skillcenter itself.”
Gift plans to continue to use Skillcenter to teach small scale entrepreneurs in Malawi. “I want us to help each other make progress with our own resources and to be able to sustain our own projects. I know that Skillcenter is the perfect fit for my mission.”
- eating healthier (37%),
- exercising more (37%), and
- saving (more) money (37%). 
Automate your savings programs. Determine how much you will save on a monthly basis, and then make it automatic. By taking this step, you make only one decision for a ten-year period instead of 120 monthly, individual decisions.
Save for retirement. If you are an entrepreneur, set up retirement accounts for you and your employees. Find out what retirement plans
are available where you work. If you own a business or work for a business, it there a 401k-retirement plan? If you work for non-profit organization,
is there a 403b or 403b (7)-retirement plan? If you work for the government, is there a 457-retirement plan?
You can also save for retirement using Roth or traditional individual retirement accounts (IRAs). The Roth IRA is a really great vehicle. You can put in after-tax money, let it grow tax-free, and then eventually withdraw funds tax-free. Some businesses have started to set up Roth 401k plans for the owner and employees. With all of your retirement accounts, you should review your beneficiaries annually. With proper use of beneficiaries for IRAs, you can build up wealth for future generations.
Costs matter. With your retirement savings and other investment programs, the costs you pay for fees and expenses are critical. Investments with high fees and expenses can significantly erode the value of your long-term savings. Choose financial institutions that have lower fees and expenses.
How much should you save for your goals? This depends on a number of factors including your personal financial information, other family data, short-term goals and long-term goals. A great way to address this question is to develop a financial plan. Regardless of this process, it is critical to start saving something, even initially a small amount. You can increase your regular, savings in the future when your income increases.
Best wishes as you implement your goals for 2019!
Lyman Howell, MBA, CFPâ is the President of Regal Oak Financial, LLC, www.regaloakfinancial.com, a Registered Investment Advisory Firm in Illinois. His firm provides financial planning and investment advisory services.
 “The Most Common New Year’s Resolutions for 2018”, Martin Armstrong, Jan 2, 2018
Overflow Afterdark provides an opportunity for artist entrepreneurs to showcase their skills and products to a diverse community of people, as well as network with other artists, entrepreneurs and small business owners. Each Afterdark event features a performing artist and a vendor. At our September event, Kimberley Mbayiwa, founder of Ricafrica, was our featured vendor.
Born and raised in Zimbabwe, Kimberley has always had a passion for the African continent. After moving to the United States for college, Kimberley's passion for Africa only increased. She gained a greater appreciation for the contributions and impact the continent had and continues to have on the rest of the world.
Kimberley's believes the opportunity is ripe for continent-based African designers, artists and artisans to participate in socially, culturally and economically enriching exchange with those outside of Africa who seek to celebrate African heritage and innovation. Unfortunately and ironically, many African entrepreneurs face barriers to entry that prevent them from participating in global celebrations of African heritage and innovation. The barriers are many--financial, physical, political, social, and more. Consequently, it is commonplace to find contributions of many African's being exploited, stolen, replicated, and appropriated. The impact of this is deep reaching. Not only are African contributors not getting the recognition they deserve, but the resulting economic loss is detrimental--lives are literally lost because Africans are being excluded from the global economy.
Kimberley founded Ricafrica.com to address the problem of those barriers. Ricafrica includes a unique online marketplace that makes goods made in Africa accessible to the global marketplace. African businesses showcase and sell their products on Ricafrica so that people around the world can learn more about, celebrate and purchase their designs and innovations. Ricafrica facilitates a global celebration of African heritage and innovation that is authentic, respectful and allows Africans, particularly those who are continent-based, to fully benefit from their contributions to these celebrations. This is an ambitious endeavor cluttered with obstacles. However, being at the intersection of all things African and lovers of all things African makes it clear that Ricafrica.com is a worthwhile endeavor that many desire and support.
Entrenuity was honored to feature Ricafrica at the September Overflow Afterdark event. Find out more at RICAFRICA.COM.
Love Tea started off as “the perfect mistake” according to Chicago couple, James and Chastity Shelby. The original concoction wasn’t planned, but was just something Chastity threw together one night when James was feeling sick. James loved the tea and started requesting that Chastity serve it iced whenever family and friends would visit. Guests raved about the drink and a friend in the food industry offered to test its success at his restaurant. The tea sold out daily during its test run and the Shelby's knew they were on to something.
The Shelby's started their business, Love Tea LLC, in the summer of 2015 and have introduced seven additional tea flavors since their beginning. Love Tea
is offered in several local restaurants and the Shelby's hope to one day see it offered in stores like Whole Foods and Marianos. Like most entrepreneurial
endeavors, building their business has required a great deal of commitment and hard work. The duo personally handles every aspect of their business--from
marketing to tea production to delivering orders. They say being in business together as husband and wife has been amazing! "It has pulled out so much strength, determination, and dedication ... not only for the business but for our marriage."
This summer, Overflow added Love Tea to its drink menu. It's a perfect match with Overflow Coffee Bar--not only does it add to the variety of the drink menu, Love Tea gives provides customers with an opportunity to add value to the community by supporting local business. As the owner of Overflow Coffee Bar, Entrenuity is committed to supporting entrepreneurs for real success by providing opportunities for pre-existing businesses to increase sustainability. Love Tea is the third small business Overflow Coffee Bar has partnered with in the past 7 months.
Overflow is featuring Love Tea's Sweet Heart strawberry lemonade, Sunshine honey lemonade, Grandma's Love traditional sweet tea, and Couples Retreat mint
Love Tea can be found at Overflow Coffee Bar 7 days a week during our regular business hours. Feel free to stop in and order a Love Tea to go with one of of our delicious sandwiches!
Boogaali is derived from two separate words: "Boo" from the last letters of the word bamboo and "gaali" from the "Ganda" word meaning bicycle.
Kasoma Noordin, Director of Boogaali Bikes Uganda, has a passion for bamboo--what he believes to be nature's perfect plant. Strong, light and durable, it can be used to create a wide variety of functional and beautiful products. It is all natural and easily renewable. When crafted into a bicycle, it helps promote an environmentally friendly and healthy lifestyle that reduces the number of vehicles clogging crowded roadways and helps improve air quality for all.
Kasoma learned the art of crafting bicycle frames with bamboo in vocational school in Kampala. He handcrafts each frame from hand-picked, mature bamboo stems, to exact specifications. Each frame is a beautiful, unique, highly functional work of art. His frames are not only beautiful, but provide an exceptional quality of ride that has amazing vibration dampening characteristics and incredible durability.
Kasoma's workshop has assembled over 2,000 bamboo bicycle frames, mostly for European customers. The bicycles haven't really caught on with the Ugandan people, who Kasoma says are not really bicycle riding people. But he is hopeful that more locals will enjoy the thrill of riding the bamboo bikes and that the bikes will become more affordable for the local people.