It’s More than Business for 7th Grader (The Palm Beach Post)

Thirteen-year-old Kayla Abramowitz isn’t just winning hearts. She’s winning entrepreneurial competitions.

The seventh-grade student at Watson B. Duncan Middle School has a big vision for Kayla Cares 4 Kids, the non-profit organization she founded after donating hundreds of DVDs to Nicklaus Children’s Hospital.

Kayla Abramowitz was inspired by her own boredom during a two-week hospital stay, she said. She has Crohn’s disease and juvenile arthritis. The hospital had activities, but sometimes, they weren’t an option.

“Sometimes, I would not feel well enough to get up, so having a movie or a game or a book in bed was a much better way of getting your mind off sickness.”

Kayla Abramowitz won first place — and a $1,500 investment and $500 gift card for her business — in the Young Entrepreneurs Academy competition. Now, she’s competing with students from eight states in the Southern Regional Saunders Scholars competition Friday at Florida Atlantic University. She could win a shot at the national competition in Washington, D.C., scholarships and financial support to grow Kayla Cares 4 Kids.

She said she’s been staying up until 10 p.m., preparing and asking Mom for tips.

“I am nervous, but that’s only normal. I’ve been practicing every single day,” Kayla Abramowitz said.

If she advances to the national competition, Kayla Abramowitz will be the first from the Northern Palm Beach County Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s chapter of the Young Entrepreneurs Academy to do so, chamber Director of Community Affairs John Pughe said.

The Abramowitz family has estimated 2,000 books, DVDs and electronics are piled in their living room, so one of Kayla Cares 4 Kids’ most pressing needs is for donated office space. Kayla hopes the organization will one day be a company that can employ people, her mom, Andrea Abramowitz, said.

Through the Young Entrepreneurs Academy, Kayla Abramowitz took 30 weeks of college-level courses, received mentoring from other entrepreneurs and created a business plan. Before that, she said, she didn’t even know what a business plan was.

The Palm Beach Gardens Community High School Future Business Leaders of America has also adopted Kayla Cares 4 Kids for the next school year, said adviser Karen Kummerlen, a global business and entrepreneurship teacher.

The club’s officers were blown away when they met with Kayla, Kummerlen said.

“They were just so inspired by her, as I think everybody is who comes in contact with her,” Kummerlen said.

 

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