The following 'success story' was submitted to OrilliaMatters by the Orillia Area Community Development Corporation.
Some might say it's serendipity that led Sarah Anne Moleme on her entrepreneurial journey, but ask her and she will tell you it is her community that made Sarahannedipity possible.
Sarahannedipity is a jewelry store located at 161 Mississaga St. E. in Orillia, which opened in the fall of 2017.
Each piece of simple, elegant jewelry sold there is individually handcrafted by Moleme. Every jewel, gem and fob is handpicked, tooled and pieced together specifically for the store’s customers.
Prior to opening the store, Sarah sold her jewelry at a local farmers' market, more as a hobby.
Looking to ramp up her business, she went looking for a storefront in Orillia. She found the perfect location, but as an ODSP recipient, funding it was a challenge.
That’s when she turned to her local CDFC office for assistance, as recommended when she registered her business.
“I approached the Orillia Area Community Development Corp. (CDC) for funding and applied for a microloan,” Sarah explains. “I also attended a CDC workshop about funding. It was great to meet with other entrepreneurs there, and have other business people to connect with for networking and support.”
The move to a storefront has been a great success for Sarah.
“We tripled our business in the first three months, and have continued the upward trend,” she notes.
Sarahannedipity now has one full-time and four part-time employees. Sarah notes that moving to a full-time operation presents a challenge for her work/life balance while managing her business and her disability, but she is very happy with the result.
Sarah is enthusiastic about the continued support she has had from the CDC.
“Trust your instinct. If you know you have a good product and a good customer base, go for it," said Moleme. "It’s important to look at the numbers and the CDC really helped with this.”
“Knowing that the CDC is there is amazing! There are lots of resources online, but you can get the same resources from the CDC staff and get to know them personally," she said.
"Their people have a real sense of community; they are in your corner and committed to helping you succeed,” Sarah explains.
She has referred numerous people to the CDC as a result of her experiences.
"The CDC staff are now my customers and my friends,” Sarah notes.
To get in touch with Sarahannedipity contact 705-323-8950 or visit www.sarahannedipity.com.