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Transforming Adversity into Opportunity: Positively Impacting Mental Health Awareness One Skull at a Time.

by Juliana Restrepo   |   September 20, 2023   |   Share this:  

In today's rapidly evolving marketplace, the transition to e-Commerce and digital marketing has become vital for small businesses seeking growth and sustainability. Among these innovative ventures is KnoWare Designs and Holistic Healing, a Whitby-based small business led by entrepreneur Kelly Ware. This unique company offers various skull-themed products that capture and express everyday emotions. Beyond being a small business, KnoWare Designs embodies a deep commitment to mental health and acceptance. Ware donates a portion of every sale to a local charity supporting mental health initiatives. 

“KNOWare Designs is a supportive company that values mental health and acceptance above all else!” 

In the face of personal challenges such as a herniated disk, depression, PTSD, and ADHD, Ware's entrepreneurial journey began as a means of financial support and a desire to share their art with the world. By joining the ShopHERE powered by Google program, Ware had the opportunity to launch their business online, reach a wider audience, and transform their art into a source of solace and joy for others.  

“To release the emotions of trauma, painting can be a useful tool! So, I started to paint my emotions into the faces of skulls and over the course of a year developed a collection that brought joy and comfort, not only to myself but to everyone who saw them!” 

Using skulls as their inspiration, Ware channeled their emotions into expressive creations that evolved into a wide collection of meaningful pieces that deserved to be shared with the world. That opportunity came from the ShopHERE program, which helped to launch  KnoWare Designs’ online presence. Despite initially considering themselves computer illiterate, Ware found the support and guidance offered by Digital Main Street's ShopHERE program invaluable. With one-on-one assistance, Ware built their website from scratch, which seemed daunting initially but quickly became manageable with step-by-step support from their e-Commerce Coordinator.  

The program provided Ware with the tools to create a platform to amplify their art and message. Guided by their e-Commerce Coordinator, Ware found the website creation process enjoyable and rewarding. Piece by piece, their website began to take shape, culminating in the creation of an online store that they could proudly call their own. 

“Because of the learning process and how easy things were once explained I am confident that I can fully manage this store now!” 

For small business owners like Ware, connecting with like-minded individuals and gaining recognition from the outside world can be a daily struggle. Finding a voice that resonates with the right audience and effectively communicates the intended message is challenging. However, the ShopHERE program offered Ware the tools to navigate the digital landscape and the confidence to move their business forward. 

Reflecting on the experience, Ware expressed gratitude for the program's impact. In addition to acquiring valuable skills, Ware's business has already seen tangible results. With five sales and growing recognition from individuals they have never met, KnoWare Designs and Holistic Healing is making its mark in the digital realm. 

“This program gave me the means to spread my art and my message! It was enjoyable to work with the Coordinator and the software. I learned so much from this program and now have new tools that I can take with me anywhere I go!” 

Ware encourages you to take the leap if you're considering joining the ShopHERE program. They attest to the program's ease of understanding and invaluable assistance. The ShopHERE program offers multiple platform options, ensuring small businesses can find a digital solution that suits their needs. 

Intrigued? Visit KnoWare Designs and Holistic Healing to explore their hand-painted skull-themed artwork and immerse yourself in their captivating collection.  

Click here to learn more about the ShopHERE powered by Google program and how it can help you establish a strong e-Commerce presence. 

About Digital Main Street

Digital Main Street was created by the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) with direct support from the City of Toronto. DMS is also supported by a group of strategic business partners, including Google, Mastercard, Shopify, Meta, Intuit QuickBooks, Square, Lightspeed, Ebay and Canada Post.

Continued investment from the Province of Ontario, through the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade (MEDJCT) has allowed the ongoing expansion the Digital Main Street Platform in order to support more businesses going digital across Ontario.

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