When you put together the imagination and heart of a child, something big comes out of it. Growing up, I was always taught that If you’ve got an idea, start today. There’s no better time than now to get going and that every small progress matters.
This is precisely what happened when spirited 9-year-old Kidpreneur, Owen from Ontario, was inspired to build and paint a bench for his little sister, Anikka. His grandparents and auntie loved Anikka’s new bench so much, that Owen was fueled to make more. He built twelve with scrap wood on Christmas Day! Those first bench prototypes were a little rough-looking, but the idea for The Nice Bench Co. was born.
Nontoxic & Sustainable Step Stools for Kids
Owen’s bench company (http://www.thenicebenchco.com) uses sustainable-source wood and non-toxic milk paint. The company donates a portion of the proceeds to help families affected by childhood cancer — a cause close to his heart. Owen selected this cause because his big brother had Leukemia.
The wood comes to The Nice Bench Co in air-dried rough-hewn planks harvested from a neighbour’s private sustainable forest in Novar, Ontario, Canada. Owen’s dad cuts the planks to size before Owen planes, routers and assembles with a drill, screws and glue. The detail-oriented young CEO then glues wooden plugs to cover each of the screw holes. Each “nice bench”, as Owen calls them, is then sanded and finished with biodegradable, zero VOC milk paint. Canadian manufacturer Homestead House Paint Co. generously donates some of the milk paint for Owen’s kidpreneur enterprise.
Owen gives each bench another careful sanding before sealing with Homestead House Paint Co.’s hemp oil or bees wax, resulting in an attractive patina. The standard colour palette was selected by Owen and his mother, who oversees production and quality. Owen’s older brother Caden gives the final lookover before signing off.
The ever-creative CEO produces a solid-colour “Happy” line, a distressed “Wild” line and The Nice Bench Company’s finest work, the “Curious” line of custom stripe creations. “Happy”, “Wild” and “Curious” can all be used to describe Owen and his entrepreneurial spirit.
The Nice Bench Co. was launched April 2017 on Facebook. The first sale was celebrated twenty days later. Since then, he has run out of his wood plank stock, twice. He has been able to donate $150.00 in gas cards to The Northern Ontario Families of Children with Cancer (NOFCC), helping to offset travel expenses for Northern families traveling to and from The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.
Way to go, Owen! We wish you more joy and success in your endeavours!
About The Nice Bench Co.
Kidpreneur Owen is the founder of The Nice Bench Co. based in Muskoka, Ontario, Canada. For every “bench” (as Owen coins them, aka kids’ step stool) sold, Owen donates $10 toward childhood cancer — a cause very close to heart & home. Designed and built using sustainable wood sourced from Novar, Ontario, Canada. Painted with Canadian, biodegradable, Zero VOC milk paint without vinyl resins. Sealed with food-safe, chemical-free, biodegradeable, Zero VOC Canadian beeswax & Carnauba wax blend. Owen’s benches are handmade and a one-of-a-kind 100% Product of Canada.
Childhood cancer research is severely underfunded, with only 4% of the National Cancer Institute’s budget spent on children’s cancer research in the U.S., and just 3% in Canada. Owen hopes he can help change those stats and bring greater awareness to childhood cancer.
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