Calgary teens find way to pay for their dance and sports programs after parents laid off
CALGARY -- They say it’s hard work but sisters Anna and Catalina Osycka have spent two months going door-to-door selling succulents.
They typically sell about 30 plants a week in their small business called Succulent Addiction.
The sisters make a good team because 14-year-old Anna is outgoing and has refined her sales pitch.
"We’re selling succulent plants that me and my sister made because. due to the virus. both our parents lost their jobs and we’re trying to help them out," Anna says after ringing the doorbell.
Their mom, Maria Minteguiaga, says the family moved to Calgary from Argentina in 2015 after her husband who works in oil and gas was transferred by his company.
"I work for a school right now, the school district and I was laid off in late April," said Mineguiaga. "Then my husband was laid off as well because the company closed it's office here in Calgary."
15-year-old Catalina says she and her sister spend their weekends shopping for succulents from stores and repotting them. She says Anna has the green thumb of the pair while she focuses on their digital presence.
"I manage the social platforms so we have Instagram and Facebook and e-mail," said Catalina. "I look at the emails and with Instagram I created the logo which is for posts. We would post a lot – once a week – so everyone knows what we’re doing."
"It's difficult for them to find a summer job right now or a volunteer opportunity – everything is closed," said Mineguiaga. "I told them you know what you have – so much talent, you can do what ever you want, the sky is your limit."
The girls say they see a lot of people during the pandemic that are sad or depressed and the two hope to provide a friendly face to brighten people’s day. They’d like to see other teens take on similar initiatives.
"We hope to inspire people to be proactive and creative and most importantly we want people to make a difference with their time and talents," said Anna.
The two have made over a thousand dollars selling succulents since June.
"I’m a competitive dancer and Anna plays field hockey and volleyball," said Catalina. "So we wanted the money to pay for our activities."
Their goal is to not burden their parents with expenses when money is short and learn some skills by running their own business to make sure they’re not losing money in the venture.