A small gesture of kindness always works wonders. Jaequan Faulkner realized it when people in his city helped set up his entrepreneurial business and make him one of the top successful teenage entrepreneurs in this date and time.
HOW IT BEGAN
13-year-old Jaequan Faulkner from Minneapolis, Minnesota started a hot dog stand in front of his house, in 2016. It began as a way of coping with depression and also gave him additional income to purchase new clothes. Jaequan sold chips and sodas along with homemade hot dogs. People loved his food and Jaquean’s stall became popular. However, a complaint was filed with the city health department, about the lack of a permit for running the food business.
GETTING THE PERMIT
Taking into consideration Jaequan’s hard work and dedication, health departments from nearby cities joined together to get him a permit ensuring he could continue the hotdog stand. The Minneapolis Health Department also granted him permission. Jaequan received food safety training some of the best health officers in the department. He was also provided a thermometer, to check if the food he served was above 140 degrees. His small stand expanded into a tent with a hand-washing station. The Health Department also paid for Jaequan’s permit allowing him to continue serving delicious hot dogs.
In an interview with WTVR, Dan Duff, Minneapolis Environmental Health Director said, “When I realized what the complaint was, I said, we’re not going to just go and shut him down like we would an unlicensed. We can help him get the permit. Let’s make this a positive thing and help him become a business owner.”
In addition to the kindness shown by the city, a local non-profit organization is giving Jaequen lessons on entrepreneurial skills reinventing his business with a new name, “Mr. Faulkner’s Old-Fashioned Hot Dogs.” The NGO has started a GoFundMe campaign so Jaquean can set up a mobile hot dog stand eventually.
Jaequen wanted to reciprocate the kindness extended to him by the city. Though he kept a portion of his earnings towards college funds, he decided to donate another portion to Mental Health Charities.
SERVICE WITH A SMILE
It isn’t the money that drives Jaquean. He genuinely enjoys seeing his customers happy when they consume his hot dogs. He says, “It’s the cooking and the people. I see someone go by with a frown on their face. I’m there with a smile, then I see a smile on their face. I just made a smile on somebody’s face by selling them a hot dog.”
Even a small gesture can change someone’s life for the better. Hopefully, Jaquean will continue benefiting and giving back to his city while building a successful business.
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