After struggling with chronic illnesses that made her concerned for her future in traditional workplace environments Abby, 19 from Derbyshire, decided to start her own online retail business Colourblind Zebra in October 2020 after completing The Prince's Trust Enterprise programme online during the Coronavirus pandemic.
Abby aged 19 from Derbyshire runs an online retail business, selling colourful, supportive badges, stickers and postcards which recognise the complexities of those living with chronic illnesses. Abby opened her business Colourblind Zebra in October 2020 following completion of The Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme online.
Due to Abby’s chronic illnesses, which include Postural Tachycardia Syndrome, which can cause dizziness and fainting and Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, working in an office environment would be difficult at this point in her life.
Abby said: ‘My intention was for drawing to be a hobby that I occasionally posted onto social media. As I began to post, other people with chronic illness were reaching out to tell me how much my artwork had helped them.
Working in an office environment or other types of jobs wouldn’t be a possibility for me. For years I had known that working for myself would be the best option as I could manage my time around how I am feeling and medical appointments, but I didn’t know where to start.
Through the Enterprise programme Abby also received a grant, which enabled her to buy an address label printer, an ergonomic chair that helps with her joint and muscle pain and a desk that is height adjustable. Abby continued:
'Starting the venture of opening a business can be a daunting feat, but with the help and support of The Prince’s Trust, it felt so much more within my reach. I am optimistic about the future. The support that The Prince’s Trust offered me has already given me much more confidence in so many different aspects of life as well as in business, which I know will continue to be an asset to me in the future. With their support, I know I have knowledgeable and supportive people behind me to help me along with the first 2 years of my business.’
Abby is also planning to expand her business to sell clothing and accessories in the future.