Entrepreneur Makes a Fresh Start with “Fresh Life” in Haiti

December 13, 2017

Samarre Gens grew up with three brothers in Haiti. They were only teenagers when their father left them and their mother began struggling with mental illness. Without parents around to care for them, the boys became very independent, cooking, cleaning and providing for themselves.

With challenging family circumstances and bleak economic prospects, Samarre felt depressed and unmotivated.

Then, Samarre learned of Just Hope International’s Jeremie Entrepreneurship Development program (JEDF) through the University of Jeremie, where he was a student studying agriculture. The JEDF program takes a holistic approach to developing entrepreneurs by providing capital investment and business mentoring that allows entrepreneurs to launch and grow businesses, increasing their own income potential and generating jobs in the community.

This was the business opportunity Samarre needed. He applied for a $500 capital investment to buy materials and ingredients to start a liquid laundry detergent business. With clear personal and professional development goals, he was accepted as one of the 23 entrepreneurs to be a part of program.

Building a Business and a Future

Ingredients and materials in hand, Samarre set up shop in his home. In no time, business was booming. Currently producing 200 bottles of laundry detergent every two weeks, Samarre is seeing about a 50% profit each month, equivalent of $400. Compared to the average Haitian income of $150 per month, Samarre’s progress is impressive!

This business success has been a huge boost to Samarre’s self-confidence and outlook on life. Branding his detergent as “Fresh Life” with bright, colorful packaging proudly marked “Made in Haiti,” Samarre shows renewed hope for his future and his country. He thanks JEDF programs for giving him a fresh life to be an entrepreneur and financially independent.

“This money gives fresh life to me,” Samarre said.

Encouraged by the business mentoring that is part of Just Hope’s Entrepreneur Development program, Samarre is now working toward increasing production while maintaining quality, increasing his prices, identifying bigger buyers, and offering bulk discounts.

Samarre has many happy customers! Just Hope’s Program Manager, Liz Queen, tried out Fresh Life detergent at home with great results.

Paying It Forward with Fresh Life

Samarre isn’t reaping the benefits of his success alone. He is committed to investing in his community by creating employment opportunities and meaningful business relationships.

Samarre has hired his first employee to help with production, and a partnership with a large, local orphanage is fueling growth. He is also making market connections with the widows involved in Just Hope’s Widows Empowerment Program, who could be potential employees and resellers.

Fresh Life laundry detergent provides more than just fresh laundry. Creating a new level of confidence and financial security, Samarre’s business has transformed his perspective and his potential. With a hand up from Just Hope, Samarre has a fresh start.

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