Hairdresser who lost her job sets up thriving business in her back garden

Forty-one-year-old Carla started out as a beauty therapist when she left school, working in salons and expanding her skills and range of treatments.

She hit a stumbling block when her friend, who ran the salon she worked in, had a baby and decided to close down her shop.

“I was left without a job and as a single mum with two young children, I was limited in the number of hours I could work,” Carla said.

Carla’s solution was to think outside of the box. Instead of looking for work in another salon, she decided to build her own in the back garden of her Little Hulton home and has never looked back.

“I had a room built in my garden so that I could give working from home a try”, she explained.

“This meant that I could work more hours and still be at home with my children to look after them.”

Carla found out about our Do Your Own Thing initiative while she was setting her business up and now she’s getting help to make her business dreams come true by planning and achieving her goals.

She explained: “I contacted ForHousing to inform them that I was working from home, and it was then that they told me about Do Your Own Thing. I thought that every bit of help would make a difference, so I gave it try,” she said.

Through the programme, Carla was introduced to a business advisor, who visits her every three weeks and provides mentoring on all aspects of managing her business, which she says has made a huge difference to enabling her to expand.

“Having someone visit me regularly to talk me through things like national insurance payments and tax has really helped, as these were areas I didn’t know a lot about.

I’ve also benefited from £500 in funding to help me refresh some of my skills and training in treatments. There were areas I trained in after leaving university but wasn’t able to pursue because I had young children, so the funding has meant that I can do refresher courses and given me confidence to be able to expand my treatment range.”

Carla’s business, which is called Timeless Beauty by Carla, is now going from strength to strength.

“I’ve never been busier,” she said. “I would recommend Do Your Own Thing to anyone. It has enabled me to increase the hours I can work by being able to run my business from home because I can still be around for my 15 year old daughter and 12 year old son - if they need me, I’m just in the back garden!”

If you have got a great idea like Carla, why not get in touch with our Do Your Own Thing programme?

It helps you make more out of what you love doing by turning your ideas into income.

Our programme helps people fuel their potential, explore new possibilities and develop ideas before taking steps into self-employment.

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