Images of four young women with the words "Celebrating some extraordinary female entrepreneurs and the Mums who support their endeavours"

Celebrating Four Young Female Entrepreneurs (And Their Mums) on International Women’s Day

This year on International Women’s Day we wanted to celebrate the achievements of some extraordinary young female entrepreneurs who have each set up their own small enterprises. We also wanted to acknowledge that behind each of these young women is an amazing Mum, providing her support, guidance and wisdom.

These are women who are challenging and changing their communities.

Freya Toussaint from Thinking of You Gift

Freya Toussaint loves receiving and giving gifts. Her mother, Donna, has worked as a florist and in the artsindustry all her life.

Freya and Donna Toussaint at Thinking of You GiftDonna was concerned about whether Freya would find meaningful employment when she left school, so she spent a frantic few years dreaming and scheming, looking for opportunities. As a result, Thinking of You Gift was launched in 2015, prior to Freya leaving school. It’s a gift service and kiosk which operates at the Queensland Children’s Hospital. Freya and Donna are partners in the business.

The kiosk stocks handmade and socially-responsible ethical products. Gifts can be delivered directly to the bedside of patients at QCH. They can also be purchased from their website’s online store.

You can watch Donna and Freya’s presentation at the final session of our 2020 Let’s Get to Work Conference.

Chloe Reid – Mrs Clompy’s Closet

Chloe Reid sitting at her sewing machine

Chloe Reid left school a couple of years ago and explored employment opportunities in retail and the clothing industry. But she wasn’t successful in securing work, and then the pandemic hit, which made it even more difficult to find a job.

Chloe has a strong interest in fashion and design. With her Mum Jodie’s support, she established a small enterprise called Mrs Clompy’s Closet. A conversation with one of Jodie’s work colleagues led to an order of hair scrunchies for a local girl’s soccer team, and suddenly Chloe found herself with an exciting niche! She now specialises in making scrunchies for sports teams in club colours. She also makes beautiful lavender pillows.

Please support Chloe’s enterprise by telling your favourite sporting team or club about it.

Annie Lee -Pa’s Produce

Annie from Pa's Produce and her Mum Kathryn

Annie Lee left school with plans to pursue her interest in hairstyling. But the pandemic prevented her from following this path, and Annie’s prospects of getting work looked rather grim.

So Annie’s Mum Kathryn came up with an idea that suited Annie’s considerable strengths and interests. Pa’s Produce is the result. A seasonal business, Pa’s Produce roasts and sells chestnuts from Annie’s grandparents’ farm.

Annie and her Mum tell their story in a short video from our Let’s Get to Work series. In the video, Kathryn explains the power of planning and of taking the first steps, even when it all seems overwhelming. You’ll also see how important it is to put the right supports in place.

While Annie looks forward to the 2021 chestnut season, she’s studying at CIT.

Emma Lynam – The Master Shredder

Last year we were very fortunate to welcome Joanne Lynam as a speaker at the final session of our Let’s Get to Work Conference.

Emma, the Master Shredder, standing next to her care, pointing to the signwriting, "Powered by possibility, not defined by disability".

Joanne shared the story of how her daughter, Emma, started her microenterprise, The Master Shredder. Joanne used her connections in the community to get the business started and then to grow.

Emma began her business with significant paid support. But Joanne had always planned to reduce this as Emma developed her skills. Emma’s staff have successfully faded support, and now she works independently. Her business currently has thirty clients. The confidence that working has given Emma has seen her move into her own home and travel overseas.

If you’re in Townsville, check out and support The Master Shredder.

Watch Joanne’s presentation at our Let’s Get to Work conference (from 00:41:10)

So Many Amazing Women to Acknowledge!

We’d also like to acknowledge so many other women in our community and across Australia who are extraordinary inclusionistas and working incredibly hard to make a difference in the lives of people with disability.

You are all amazing!