|Katie as pictured by ST84Photogrpahy|
“I knew it wouldn’t be easy,” said Katie, “It’s hard being a single mum and running a business, but it all just comes together, especially if you have the help of a supportive family.”
With ideas buzzing around her head Katie knew she would need some advice to make sure she started her business off on the right foot. Her first stop was the local community centre.
Katie said “I got in touch with Kirkdale Community Centre, because I was looking for advice around funding. The woman there mentioned that they had an empty kitchen there fully fitted ready for someone to take on. The centre is right by my house, by my daughter’s school so it felt like ‘maybe this is where I am meant to be’.”
Katie was keen to ensure she was making sounds decisions, and wanted to look at any help she could get with getting her business up and running.
“Someone told me about The Women’s Organisation, so I went along to get some advice. My adviser gave me loads of help to put me in the right direction. With that support and having found the right place, setting up the business, although it was a hard slog, has not been a stress to me, I’m in a groove with it.”
Being a local resident, Katie had watched businesses start and fail on the site, and she felt she could see where they went wrong and how to learn from their mistakes.
“The café premises has been there for years. I’d seen it open and close a few times. I knew it just needed someone to be consistent, so I dedicated to open every Monday to Friday. That way people know exactly when we are there, and I get to spend the weekends with my kids.”
“I am local myself," reflected the LMH resident, "so I am glad that local people are my customers – without customers I wouldn’t have a business. I like chatting to the young kids that come in. I want to instil goodness in them and let them know I’m not there to judge. We also have local pensioners pop in, and I am glad to be there to check on them and give them their scouse to take home for their tea. It’s not just a café, it’s a part of the community.”
Having faced real lows in her personal life, Katie knew the timing had to be right and told us:
“I opened the café when I was ready, and it was what I wanted. I wanted to achieve my goals. I’d had a very unhappy few years, I’d been in a bad place, but I have come out the other end and know now if I give my best to everything I can achieve. The things I have been through have made me the strong woman I am.”
Things are going well so far for Katie and her business ‘The Gordon Café’ which offers outside catering as well as a community café.
The mum of two told us “I love working for myself. It’s hard work, but everything is falling into place. I work with great girls, there are two part time staff (one is my cousin) and me. I enjoy it that much it’s like work is my social life. Saying that, I am a perfectionist. A business is like your baby. So I take it seriously and make sure everything is how I want it to be.”
Since opening the doors of the café Katie has felt the real life changing effect of taking charge and working for herself.
“Time has flown. Every day that a problem comes up, I just get on and deal with it. It makes you stronger and you can learn from those experiences. My kids are really proud of me”
To experience The Gordon Café for yourself pop in Monday-Friday at Kirkdale Community Centre on Stanley Road, Liverpool.
Katie’s motto is “A day at a time, we can achieve anything”.
If like Katie you feel the time is right to achieve your goal of running your own business, why not contact The Women’s Organisation for advice, grants and support on 0151 706 8111 or firstname.lastname@example.org
From building confidence to developing a business plan and accessing business start-up grants, The Women’s Organisation offer a friendly FREE and supportive service to help you make your dream a reality.