A single mum has managed to battle her way off benefits to open up her own business.
Ever since Melanie Kirsopp was a teenager she’s had a passion for hairdressing.
Despite doing a travel and tourism course at college alongside hairdressing, it was always the latter she wanted to make a career out of.
Now, with the help of Tedco and the New Enterprise Allowance programme, she has been able to come off benefits and open up her own business.
Fabeauty Hair opened its doors within an existing barber’s shop in Front Street, Cleadon, and she says it is one of the best dicesions she’s ever made.
The 27-year-old, from South Shields, said: “I’ve been a hairdresser for a while, and owning my own business was always something I wanted to do.
Owning my own business is always something I wanted to doMelanie Kirsopp
“I’d been a hairdresser in other salons, but never felt I was able to be given the opportunity to grow.
“It was my friend who encouraged me to go for it. There was room spare in the barber shop which I was able to rent and it went from there.”
The mum-of-one’s salon and beauty business offers a range of treatments, including gel nail extensions, and waxing, and has a visiting botox expert who also offers appointments.
Melanie is also a hair extension specialist.
“I have been doing hair for the past eight years and even though people tried to put me off when I was younger, it was something I wanted to do.
“At college, I enrolled on a travel and tourism course and also a hairdressing course, but it was always hairdressing I was more interested in.
“Tedco has helped me a lot to set up the business, and it is probably one of the best decisions I’ve made.”
Melanie received support from Tedco under the New Enterprise Allowance programme to help her with her business plan, explore funding and get started.
Tedco business advisor Nicky Gray said: “Melanie has invested a great deal of time and her own money to get the business to this stage.”
The New Enterprise Allowance Programme supports anyone over the age of 18, who is unemployed and in receipt of a job seekers benefit.
The NEA programme offers an initial eight weeks of support to create a business plan and apply for any funding needed.
Once the business plan is approved, people will receive 26 weeks of guaranteed payments to help to build and establish the business.
The hair and beauty salon is open Mondays and Tuesdays from 9am to 5pm, Thursdays from 9.30am to 7pm, Fridays from 9am to 6pm and Saturdays 9am to 4pm.
To make an appointment, call in or call 0191 519 6849.
• Tedco can be contacted by calling 0191 516 6102.