An interview with Dan McCarty, co-owner of Eevah in Elgin.
Q: Describe your business. What do you do?
EevahAddress: 2111 Big Timber Road Elgin, IL 60123
Owners: Dan and Pam McCarty
Year business started: 2012
Web address: www.Eevah.com
A: Eevah is a new party plan jewelry company with a heart. We are thrilled to bring women beautiful jewelry to enrich their own personal style and a business opportunity to enrich their life. Eevah's mission is to help 33,000 children in need around the world by 2020. The money required to do that will come through the selling of beautiful jewelry by independent jewelry consultants. Every jewelry party will feed one child for a month. Additionally every purchase of jewelry will feed a child. Eevah is committing its corporate resources toward reaching this mission.
Q: What made you start your business?
A: When many of us see the hunger and thirst of children around the world, we ask ourselves, "What can I do?" The problems seem so great, and our ability to make much of an impact seems so small. My wife Pam and I wanted very much to help children in need. After we were married ten years ago, we began sponsoring needy children in poor countries. In addition, through our promotional products business we were able to fund projects such as a water system providing clean water for a village of 2,000 in Zambia and an AIDS hospice wing at a clinic in South Africa.
But we wanted to do more, the needs were so great. Each year 22,000 children age 5 and under die every day ... over 8 million children per year. Over half of those deaths were attributed to simply not having enough food and clean water. In the midst of so many children needlessly dying, our daughter Alayna Grace was born in July of 2009. As I would rock our precious child to sleep at night and consider her blessings I couldn't help but see the eyes of the many hungry children that have no food, drinking dirty water, orphaned, without hope, and dying. The pain of that and the wanting to do more was the birth of Eevah.
Q: What has been the most difficult obstacle in running or starting a small business?
A: The most challenging aspect has been reaching those who will become Eevah consultants. The obstacles of competition and so many voices vying for one's attention are difficult to overcome.
Q: What do you enjoy most about operating your business?
A: Building personal relationships with our sales consultants is hugely rewarding. Knowing that our efforts each day are helping kids survive another day is priceless.
Q: Is this what you pictured yourself doing when you were young?
A: When I was in college I knew I wanted to help those who could not help themselves, and that's been mostly what I've been doing since.
Q: If you could give one tip to a rookie business owner, what would it be?
A: Whether your dream is big or small, don't be afraid of starting small. Live below your means, and watch carefully every dollar of expense. Tend to every area of the business personally, and be patient -- rarely does success come overnight.
• Every Monday we feature a small, suburban business. We want to hear about yours. Contact Kim Mikus at email@example.com.