As a small business owner herself, Candice Meisels knows the struggles and challenges involved in running a company.
So when Covid -19 hit earlier this year, the founder of Candice Meisels PR felt she had to do something to support small businesses that had already dealt with devastating bushfires and ongoing drought.
With her PR agency she has been assisting start-ups and small to medium-sized Australian businesses for seven years.
“Whilst most agencies can’t work with small businesses and small budgets and small or no retainers, I have created a model to do just this,” she explains.
“I love supporting small businesses and sharing their stories and helping them to grow and scale. It has been incredible to watch these businesses grow over the years.”
After experiencing drought, fires and then Covid all within the space of a couple of months, her heart just broke for small, rural and family businesses and she felt he could do more.
“I have always had a soft spot towards the underdog. Perhaps from growing up as a child in South Africa, the extreme poverty which I saw on a daily basis, eroded a hole in my heart for the underdog and made me always strive to make a difference no matter how small.”
Meisels set up Fairy Fun Toys as a social enterprise that purchases Australian made or designed educational resources directly from small businesses based all over Australia.
“My husband and I grew tired of heading to the local large stores or placing online orders only for plastic toys to disappoint or break. We realised that we have purchased duplicate toys over the decade for our children of varying ages. The toys just did not last.
“I wanted to only buy wooden, handmade and premium Australian made or designed educational products. I found many incredible family-run small Australian businesses and was shocked that I did not know about them before. Their products are simply stunning and I had to help them, help parents who were as overwhelmed by toy choice as I was over the last decade and help our children, educators and charities at the same time.”
Schools, educators, those who home school and therapists are offered discounts or bonus products to support them and grassroots initiatives are sponsored as well. It’s a win-win for everyone. Purchasing and supporting local can really make a difference to so many Australians.
“The Women's Business School Scholarship fund will be the first grassroots initiative that we will sponsor. We want to assist small business as much as we can and to give other women in business the chance to acquire business skills to grow their business is just another avenue in which we will support Australian small business.”