LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) — Hub City Ink has just won a $10,000 grant from STAHLS to further its mission of helping people with disabilities stay independent.
The boutique produces clothing and provides graphic design services, but primarily serves as one of the professional programs of LIFE Inc., a nonprofit center for independent living. It serves people with disabilities in Lubbock and surrounding counties.
Lead designer Jared Kendall teaches design techniques to those learning to live with a disability. He says they don’t always have the resources or opportunities to work in this industry, so the program aims to teach them the skills to start their own home-based business.
“It gives people with disabilities the opportunity to get into this industry and even do it from home, when they have to stop and do a t-shirt and then take a break. So, it gives them the opportunity to be more independent, not just in their normal lives, but in starting their own home-based business,” Kendall said.
Kendall has dyslexia and says he struggled with a lot of things in college because he didn’t have the resources he needed. He says art got him through this and he became passionate about helping other people in a similar situation. After obtaining a degree in graphic design, he participated in the creation of the Hub City Ink program. At a conference, he heard about the Stahl Family Small Business Scholarship and decided to apply.
“I actually did the app on my phone when I was there at that time and just went through the process of filling it all in and I kind of forgot because I didn’t think not that it would actually happen,” Kendall said. “And then I got an email and so I was super excited about it.”
The Quarterly Store Makeover Scholarship was created to help business owners take their business to the next level. The possibilities are exciting for Lubbock native Camille Carl, one of Kendall’s students.
“I’ve been involved with them since they started. Just learning different aspects of graphic design, wanting to learn more, and coming here kind of pushed the envelope,” Carl said. “It’s great because I can get a concrete idea of what it’s like to design a shirt, and it’s something I really wanted to do.”
It is her dream to turn this interest into a business she can run from home. Carl is a mother of five, with eight grandchildren.
“They are my joy. They are everything to me and being able to do things for them is exactly what I love to do,” she said.
Carl was taking nursing prep classes, but had to shift gears in 2012, when she was hit by an 18-wheeler and ejected from the vehicle. She says she loves learning new things, and the scholarship money will help provide new equipment to keep doing that. Kendall calls the scholarship “a dream come true.”
“It’s not only going to help us move forward, but it’s going to give us so many opportunities to help our community and help people with disabilities around the world,” Kendall said. “Because we’re going to be able to expand and use our program as a model for Independent Living Centers in every state, and so we’re very excited about the possibilities of what it can do for us.”
Kendall says six students are taking the next set of classes in September. People with disabilities can find out more and register for the program at Hub City Ink website. Lubbock businesses can also become community partners to help support the program and LIFE Inc.
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