Last summer we introduced you to two young ladies who used their school break to start a business. Now the young entrepreneurs have added a new title, philanthropists. Armani and Amaya Jefferson are our Everyday Heroes.
The Jefferson and Hamilton sisters have an unbreakable bond. They are bonded in love, business, and helping others. Thirteen-year-old Armani and twelve-year-old Amaya Jefferson are the owners of Mani and Maya’s Fruity Treats. They specialize in fruity lemonade, smoothies, pineapple drinks, and pineapple boats. The honor roll students just celebrated their first anniversary in business. Armani says, “It’s taken off because we are starting to do bottles now, and we’re starting to ship, and we’re starting to sell in restaurants now. At first it was just in our front yard type of them or at home type of business, and everybody contacted us about events to get us in restaurants and stores, and so it really helped to boost our business.”
The duo also held a Kidz Entrepreneurs Expo. “We had a Kidz Entreprenuer Expo in April, and it was basically help kids to encourage them and motivate them to start their own business too, because you’re never too young to accomplish your dreams. it turned out really good. We raised a lot of money and half of that proceeds went to MUSC,” says Armani.
Their mom, Desiree Hamilton says the girls are on a mission to help their two-year-old baby sister Taylor and others. Desiree says, “Taylor has a form of sickle cell called sickle beta thalassemia. She’s on penicillin twice a day every day. She will have to do that until she’s about six or seven years old, that’s just to keep her immune system built, because she’s so young. For her, if she gets a cold it could put her in the hospital for a week. When they actually came to the hospital to see her, and see her hooked up to all these tubes and IV, I think it scared them a little bit.”
When Armani and Amaya started their business, they immediately began donating money to MUSC on a regular basis, and recently donated 500-dollars to help Taylor and other children. Armani says, “I think we’re making a big difference, because being that we’re helping kids like Taylor. I think we’re making a difference because it’s also helping with their health issues. It’s also helping get a cure for whatever they have. It’s making a difference because what we’re donating could also be saving lives.” Amaya says, “It makes me proud, because I’m waking up knowing I’m helping people who need help everyday, donating to sickle cell and donating to hospitals, and it makes me proud to help people.”
The girls say they will continue to work hard to make a difference. Mom Desiree says, “It makes me feel so wonderful. I’ve actually been very shocked by a lot of the things the girls have been doing in the past year. I can only imagine in the next five years what they’re going to accomplish. It just really gives me a sense of hope. It gives me a sense of there are great kids out here and two of them just happen to be mine.”
The girls may have to change the name of their business slightly. The future sign will read Mani, Maya, and Tay’s Fruity Treats.
The young business owners are in high demand. They just wrapped up an event with MUSC. and have requests from Walmart locations across the Lowcountry. They will also set up shop at an NFL player’s football camp this summer. The young ladies also plan to take some time off to travel this summer.