Entrepreneur, content creator seeks to EmpowHer others like her
Posted September 16, 2021 6:26 p.m. EDT
Updated September 17, 2021 9:48 a.m. EDT
During her junior year at the University of North Carolina at Chapel, Caitlyn Kumi launched Miss EmpowHer, a brand she says promotes self-confidence, inclusion and empowerment of women of all shapes and shades, anywhere and everywhere.
“I really wanted to start a brand that empowers women. As women, we face so many challenges, and I really wanted to create a brand that really helps women be the best versions of themselves,” she said.
Miss EmpowHer is a platform, showcasing stories from and for strong women, and a product, waist beads, a fashion and status symbol that originated in Kumi's native West Africa.
Traditionally, the beads symbolize womanhood and strength. Kumi says waist beads helped her when she was struggling with body insecurity. She wanted to share that feeling with others, while educating them at the same time.
“It’s almost becoming that culture isn’t meant to be shared, and where I’m from in Ghana we take pride in sharing cultures,” said Kumi. “As I’m sharing my culture, I’m making sure I educate people on the history and origin behind waist beads.”
Kumi says it was hard, but she learned how to be successful by talking to people who have had great success in business and by reading books and case studies.
“The biggest insecurity I had to overcome was the self-doubt,” she said.
Miss EmpowHer's newest project is YouTube channel where Kumi plans to interview and highlight women with remarkable stories and backgrounds. The series will include meet-the-expert talks, advice sessions and successful women discussing how they were able to succeed in their careers.
“Not everyone has that sister. Not everyone has that woman that they can talk to. Miss EmpowHer can be that,” said Kumi.