A Fort Worth nonprofit is on a mission to help young people turn their unfortunate situations into life-changing business opportunities.
“101 Prep” helps them find their true purpose by providing mentors who are business owners and entrepreneurs across North Texas to help shape the future leaders.
Every other week, aspiring young entrepreneurs, some as young as 12 years old, come together for a round table discussion at Suite 101, just south of downtown Fort Worth.
They talk about a number of things, including how they can expand and make better use of their businesses.
“Never in a million years, would I have thought that at the age of 16, that I would have ran in and got this good mentor program,” said Kendyll Locke.
At just 16 years old, Kendyll Locke is the president and CEO of his own business, KD’s Socialhouse Maintenance.
“I provide business owners the opportunity to build their brand through a couple of different services that I provide, one of the main ones, being social media management, as well as website development,” Kendyll said.
And that vision started in 2016, when Kendyll was just 14.
“Once I came to this one-on-one prep program, it kind of allowed me to put down everything that I wanted to do, where I’m trying to go, and put it down on paper,” Kendyll said.
“It is an effort to build them up from the inside out, if that makes sense, allow them to just be. Allow them to be in a safe space, where they are just able to be themselves,” said 101 Prep Founder Lexia Crawford.
Crawford says this is her purpose -- opening the doors for young creative minds.
“They’re the kids that people end up teasing and often times unfortunately get bullied,” Crawford said.
Lexia was one of those kids, who says she didn’t discover the power of her own creative talent until she was much older, using her own mental health issues and experiences to help young people.
“And so if we can catch them at an early age, and show them the power of their gifts and talents, their God-given gifts and talents, if they can thrive in that, they can become more confident, and they’ll share that confidence with their peers,” said Crawford.
Which is exactly what Kendyll has been doing since he became a part 101 Prep.
“Never think that you’re too young to get out and do something,” Kendyll said. “The sky is the limit, and it really is.”
Kendyll will graduate from Crowley Collegiate Academy in 2020, where he will receive his high school diploma and an associate’s degree in Humanities from Tarrant County College.
He then plans to attend Howard University in Washington D.C., where he will major in Political Science.
For more information on 101-prep, and how you can get involved – go here.