A Co Tyrone teacher has launched her own business after coming to the aid of parents coping with the pressures of home schooling during the pandemic.
Ashley Lynch, a primary school teacher, designed and created educational folders for children to use while schools were closed.
She has now turned Little Learners into a business venture with the support of the Go For It business start programme in association with Derry City and Strabane District Council.
Ashley said: “My son didn’t make it to pre, pre-school and I wanted to enhance his educational journey.
"As a teacher myself I didn’t want him to fall behind, so I started to create folders and activity sheets for him, my nieces and nephews.
“Then friends wanted them for their kids. They then said – you could sell these and with a push from my husband, he said give it a try, we went for it and the rest is history.”
She said using the Go For It programme had helped her gather her thoughts more coherently in order to create a business plan.
“When it finally came to launch day, I was a bit stressed thinking will anyone actually order or will anything come from it. I launched at 10am and I received my first order at 10.03am and it was just ping, ping, ping all day. Obviously, parents were calling out for help whilst home schooling.”
Ashley said her biggest achievement was the difference her business was making to some parents and families.
“I had a mum contact me in Mid-Ulster whose child was non-verbal. She bought an introductory pack to see if it would be of any use and the child started saying the words.
“She then contacted me and ordered one of everything I have so that was very overwhelming and great that it was making a difference to someone and that the business is continually growing thanks to the Go For It programme.”