Leila Hobart, from Silver End, used a grant from Braintree District Council to launch INSPIREUK – a new business which promotes physical and mental wellbeing.
Six months ago, Leila was awarded a £3,000 grant from the Young Entrepreneur Programme to help kick start her business.
INSPIREUK educates businesses on the importance of employee wellbeing, runs exercise sessions and offers individuals affordable counselling services.
With the help of this grant, Leila has built a gym to offer clients private, personal training sessions. She also used the money to create a website to promote her services.
Leila Hobart, founder of INSPIRE, said: “I was able to build and convert our garage into a gym. I believe I am the only gym in Essex that will focus solely on mental health and will never weigh or measure my clients. This is called intuitive movement and health first approach and taking weight stigma out of the equation to enable everyone to enjoy exercise regardless of their age or abilities.”
After closing her first deal with a large food company, she added: “It’s all starting to happen here at INSPIRE and I know that this would not have been possible without the help of this grant.”
She added: “I would encourage any young entrepreneur, regardless of what your idea is, to put pen to paper and apply for the grant; it could really change your life like it has mine, as cliché as it sounds.”
Cllr Tom Cunningham, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Economic Growth at Braintree District Council, said: “Supporting young people with their business ideas and getting new businesses off the ground supports business growth, adds to the local economy and is good for our communities. Our programme gives young people a purpose and a chance to fulfil their ambitions and a means by which they can follow their dreams. I’m delighted that Leila has found her niche in helping others and wish her every success for the future.”
The Young Entrepreneur Programme is part of a wider drive to grow the local economy and create jobs.
The scheme is open to those aged between 16 - 30 and aims to inspire young individuals to use their talents for enterprise.
Grants between £500 and £3,000 are available to support start-up costs such as training courses, stock and digital equipment.
Applicants can apply online by submitting a three-minute video detailing their business idea and it’s potential. Budding young entrepreneurs should visit www.braintree.gov.uk/yep for the full details.