#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. Since 2014, when the Nornickel company started developing social entrepreneurship in the territories of its presence, children’s development centers, a country recreation complex, a center for aesthetic medicine, and a dance and sports multicenter have appeared in Norilsk. The heads of the 69 Parallel charitable foundation, Ekaterina Karaseva and Ekaterina Galayda, who opened an unusual ShandyCandy store, were also able to take advantage of the company bonuses.
Successful business is not an innate talent or a matter of chance. It is a set of skills, flexibility of thinking and constant concentration. This is the conclusion reached today by the heads of the 69 Parallel charitable foundation.
Ekaterina Karaseva is a civil engineer by her main profession, Ekaterina Galayda is a psychologist. The former has a family hobby for charity: the 69 Parallel foundation was once created by her mother, Nina Karaseva. The girl began working in it as a volunteer, when a schoolgirl, and at the age of 20 she became the chairman of the organization. Another Ekaterina, by her own admission, ended up in the fund due to an interesting coincidence, but for more than ten years of work she has never regretted it.
In 2014, they were among the very first students of the social entrepreneurship course organized by Nornickel as part of the World of New Opportunities charitable program.
“We learned how to build a team, motivate employees, calculate costs, make an estimate, plan the time and stages of project development. And they came to the conclusion that it doesn’t matter whether it is a business or a social project. The resulting tools can be used in any area. Including non-profit one. What is more important, we got acquainted with the community of Norilsk entrepreneurs, found new partners for our projects, with whom we still closely communicate”, said Ekaterina.
If you want to be successful in life, do not stop, constantly develop. This is one of the rules of the fund managers.
“In recent years, I have repeatedly studied at various refresher courses, as well as at trainings, seminars and other events organized by the Nornickel company. This includes social engineering, business planning, and other training. I just recently graduated from a course where I studied to be an environmental trainer”, says Ekaterina Galayda.
When in 2018 Nornickel announced another enrollment for the social entrepreneurship course, she, together with Ekaterina Karaseva, was again among the listeners. Having successfully completed the training, they presented their business project at the investment session and received support from the company for the opening of the ShandyCandy charity store. There things not only get a second life – the money for their sale goes to support the activities of the fund.
By that time, they already had experience in implementing social projects. In the last few years, the 69th Parallel foundation has won several grants. Among them is the social project named Wardrobe where some Norilsk residents bring things, while others take them for symbolic donations.
Almost immediately after opening, the ShandyCandy store began to pick up momentum. Today you can buy a new trendy item here, a blouse in an avant-garde style, a vintage wedding dress or shirts from a man’s shoulder, so beloved by Norilsk girls. The average price of a product is 500 rubles. You can view the assortment on the ShandyCandy page in social networks and order delivery there.
“There are no second-hand shops in Norilsk, but here you can find, for example, an interesting thing for a themed party or photo session for little money. It was originally planned that sales would be mostly held online. Therefore, we have not lost anything. Moreover, after months of restrictions, people are used to sitting on Instagram and other social networks, looking for goods. And it was good for us”, explains Ekaterina Galayda.
The Norilsk women were helped to deepen their understanding of business processes by the Trackers Training School, which was launched by Nornickel in April.
“Trackers can be useful at any stage of the business. Both for those who are just starting entrepreneurship, and for already operating businesses”, explains the chairman of the 69th Parallel foundation.
“Initially, we conceived ShandyCandy as a space for unusual, creative people. In addition to its main activity, the store is also engaged in environmental education. We hold eco-events, eco-lectures, speak at various forums, talk about how our clothes affect the planet. Few people today think about the fact that the textile industry is the second source of waste in the world. So is it worth spending money on new things? At ShandyCandy, we offer what you don’t need to produce, you don’t need to bring from afar. An emphasis on ecology is a global trend. Another plus – cost savings. Money saved in this way on things can be spent on something else. Therefore, we always urge people to change the stereotypes imposed by the consumer society”, Ekaterina Galayda expresses her position.
At the swap-parties held at ShandyCandy, Norilsk residents can exchange some unnecessary thing for a necessary one. At master classes – to turn, for example, an old shabby chair into a designer piece of furniture.
In addition, this year the plastic recycling workshop and ShandyCandy store for the first time took part in the fund’s charity fair and contributed to the rehabilitation of two small Norilsk residents.
“The store is new opportunities for us. A good and effective tool to tell the townspeople about conscious consumption, to change people’s thinking in the direction of how they can help the planet, how they can rebuild their lives to make it more environmentally friendly and live in harmony with themselves”, notes Ekaterina Karaseva.
Earlier we talked about a Norilsk entrepreneur who opened a veterinary clinic in the city.
Text: Elena Popova, Photo: Olga Zaderyaka