A mum who launched a business after selling her daughter's unwanted clothes on eBay has said it helped her get through the trials of motherhood - and now she wants to inspire others, too.
Kelly Bowler, 32, who has two children aged three and nine, is growing her business after taking a course which also enabled her to complete her English and Maths qualifications.
She now feels like a positive role model for her daughters and works part-time at an estate agent in Chanterlands Avenue to earn more money to push back in to her business.
"I did enjoy being a stay at home mum with my partner going out to work, but I now I have a purpose, something just for me and I feel like a more a positive role model for my daughters who see that I have get-up-and-go," Kelly said.
"I feel like I've found me again and I've shown my kids that if they want something in life then they should go for it.
"It can sometimes leave you down being a stay at home mum and you can get stuck in a rut watching the same cartoons every day, but I hope that I can inspire other mums that they can do the same as me.
"Now, working at Higson Homes as well as selling on eBay, means that I have a great balance between home and work life as I finish at 1pm and can then go post my parcels and pick the kids up from school.
"With eBay as well I can take the kids to Big Fun and sit there while they are playing and respond to people or list more clothes.
"It's a nice feeling to have expanded my business and my eldest helps me packaging up the parcels and can learn from me that you have to work in life for things."
At first Kelly started out selling her daughters' clothing on eBay after they had outgrown them for some extra cash.
She then sold her family's clothes and now, after the help of Flying Start, she is buying from clothing wholesalers and making a profit by selling roughly 15 items a week.
Created by Unity, Flying Start includes six months of support, digital access and advice via its current training facility in Endike Lane, north Hull.
The Business Advisory Service there helps people to achieve their ideas, whether starting up or already established and in need of a fresh pair of eyes on a stagnant company.
"Training at Unity gave me an unexpected boost in confidence," Kelly said.
"First of all I completed my English and functional skills and then took on level two digital skills which taught me how to use e-commerce platforms, both eBay and Amazon, so that I can make more of selling online.
"Tilly Tyson from the Business Advisory Service at Unity helped me to draw up a business plan and we’re also exploring different products to sell.
"This whole experience has become so much more valuable to me than I realised it would, especially as I have found a part-time job at Higson Homes through Unity’s networks.
"The good thing about training at Unity is the flexibility. I come into the centre for help and advice but I can complete the work online at any time.
"I take my laptop with me everywhere I go and can fit all the learning around my family.
"I've made new friends at Unity and feel so much more confident in myself and about my future."
Residents are invited to the Unity drop-in week from January 27 at Endike Lane to register and find out more about training courses, qualifications and employment opportunities.
"Our shared vision is to make HU6 a great place for people to live and we are currently running numerous projects to bring us together as a community, helping people to help themselves.
"In the HU6 area many residents have issues with substance misuse, housing and mental health.
Our key workers are fully qualified and experienced to support people from all walks of life.
"Being out of work has a negative impact on self-esteem, so while attending Unity, we can help people get into employment.
"The overall impact is much bigger and we have many examples of how it improves the lives of local residents."
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