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Dupe Akinniyi is the founder of Montessori Box, a bilingual curated box company providing Montessori materials for children from 0 to 10 years old. An experienced educator and parent of 4 children, Dupe's vision is to promote access to Montessori's learning approach to all households, regardless of social standing or colour. The Montessori Boxes contain materials that meet young learners' developmental needs and are designed to encourage independent learning and development.
Dupe credits the Black Entrepreneurship Loan Fund’s Microfinance pilot program and Alterna with helping her take her business model to the next level. "Having my business application approved gave me confidence that people believe in my idea, and that makes a world of difference to me."
For Black History month, Dupe plans to honour the accomplishments of other Black business owners and entrepreneurs in the community. "I use social media to create awareness and share their business information with my contacts. Being an owner myself, I think it's important to remove barriers and create this community of connection because a lot of amazing and talented people are often overlooked. "