Grants for Young Entreprenuers Recipients: Making an Impact
Argent Technologies, LLC is proud to assist young entreprenuers with opportunities for starting, supporting, and expanding their endeavors with our Grants gor Young Entreprenuers (GYE) program. Many young people have the vision and ambition for succcess, yet may not have the financial support to pursue that vision. We at Argent Technologies believe that their successes are successes for all of us. With this in mind, we have provided grants to several small business endeavors and are proud to share their stories here.
Charlie Foxtrot is a community of veterans working to lower the veteran suicide rate by using horses to bring veterans out of isolation and give them space to normalize the transition into the civilian world.
While there are several factors that play a role in someone’s decision to end their life, CF believes a community of other veterans can help with the isolation piece. With this in mind, they are building one such community around the care for and companionship of horses.
Horses have been shown to provide therapeutic effects to individuals even when that wasn’t the intent. While CF doesn't claim to fix any problems, they believe there’s a good chance to accidentally receive some therapeutic benefits while becoming part of a veteran community.
"Our main focus is to a create a community of veterans who feel comfortable showing up as they are and find other veterans to connect with. We aren’t here to fix anyone and we don’t treat PTSD, anxiety, or depression. What we do is pair people with horses, the outdoors, other veterans, and then give them space." — www.charliefoxtrotky.com
After successfully completing their Pilot Program in 2019, Charlie Foxtrot is planning 4 separate programs for 2020:
Community Program: "This 4-week program is a chance for you to get to know us and our horses. You don’t need to have experience with horses and you don’t have to commit to a serious, long-term relationship with Charlie Foxtrot. Think of it as 4 week fling. None of the horse stuff will be too technical and it will be entertaining even if you do have prior horse experience."
Groundwork Program: "This program teaches you about horse behavior and makes sure you understand basic horse handling skills. If you want to move on to riding, you will need to show up for each class. Already have a background with horses? Contact us to set up a time to take a skills test. You pass- you may pass go and collect $200. You fail- we looking forward to seeing you in class!"
Bareback Riding Program: "Unless, of course, you’re able to stay on. Now that you know the basics, you get to learn to ride with minimal equipment. You’ll receive a helmet and a high five and then spend the next few weeks finding your balance. We think that once you get past the initial soreness, you’ll find the whole experience to be quite enjoyable!"
Riding Program: "If you’ve made it this far, you’ve passed the bareback riding test and have earned your saddle. You and all your saddle earning cronies will now work together to master maneuvers used by cavalrymen. You will learn how to work as a partner with your horse and wield a sword on horseback. You know what’s better than riding like you’re in the 1860’s cavalry? Nothing. Nothing’s better than that."
In the end, the people at CF are in it to help save lives. They understand that transitioning from military service to civilian life can be a challenge and they want to help veterans make that transistion as smoothly as possible. Many of them have been directly impacted by veteran suicide with the loss of a friend, comrade, or loved one. No matter who it is, it is always #22TooMany. Charlie Foxtrot recognizes those individuals as the reason for doing what they do.
"What we are trying to do is lower the veteran suicide rate and build a community, so whatever we have to do to get there, we’ll do," — Katie Strayer, Charlie Foxtrot Founder and GYE Recipient
In the truest spirit of the GYE, Argent Technologies awarded $5000 to 15-year-old Akeila "Akki" Tejwani in 2020.
Akki, a high school sophomore, has started a bakery business that offers healthy, organic, and vegan snack options, all while giving back to her community. Akki's Cupcakery & Tea donates a substantial portion of it's profits to charities that benefit kids.
Akki was inspired by her own experiences with dietary restrictions growing up. "I wanted to come up with healthy and vegan options for kids to enjoy the baking savories as I was not able to eat sweet things as I was diagnosed with diabetes when I was one year old," she says.
"I am very passionate about Cupcakes, Teas and Working with Kids! I came up with this idea of using organic ingredients for all my recipes and donating 50% of the proceeds to kids charities in San Antonio." — Akki Tejwani
All of Akki's baked goods are made fresh to order, never premade in large batches. She offers a variety of organic, gluten-free, and vegan options. Her online bakery makes ordering and scheduling pickup or delivery easy and convenient.
Akki's Cupcakery & Tea has made quite the splash in the San Antonio area, with testimonials and 5-star reviews raving about her baked goods. San Antonio's CBS KENS5 even did a piece on her business.