Kamaria and her mom, Shaunice started Brown Girls Stationery (https://browngirlsstationery.com/) four years ago when at seven years old, Kamaria couldn’t find any stationery that represented her. This is how it all started.
“I was looking for stationery for girls with someone who looked like me, but I was sad because I couldn’t find anything. My mom created a character and posted it on social media. Everybody who saw it said, ‘How can we find this? Where can we buy this?’ It just launched from there. It made me feel happy because I solved a problem for me and also for other girls.
Brown Girl Stationery’s mission is to make sure all brown girls are represented in all different ways. I had a hearing aid when we started and I made sure we had a character who had a hearing aid. I want to make sure that kids in wheelchairs are represented. We have a character who has vitiligo. We see a lot of positive feedback from our products.
This is a business for girls created by girls. That’s what I love about it. I’ve learned your future is in your hands and whatever choice you make is the best choice for you.
We’re really big on not complaining, but on having a solution. If you have a problem, you have to figure out how you’re going to solve it. Kamaria is deaf in her left ear and one of the things I’ve raised her on is — you have a disability, but it’s not disabling unless you allow it to be. That’s a foundation for us.
Starting Brown Girl Stationery increased Kamaria’s confidence. She’s not shy, but she’s very soft-spoken. Learning how to speak up for others through the business turned around and helped her get the confidence to be able to speak up for herself. Doing interviews has helped her know how to talk to her teachers. I’m teaching her about business practices, but she’s putting it into her academics as well.
Kamaria does a vision board every year. We look back at it and check off certain things. She has a goal of connecting with Disney or Nickelodeon. We would love to see some of the characters turn into books or TV shows — to see a cartoon character or a comic book inspire kids to go after their dreams and try.”
– Kamaria in Atlanta