Another Jamaican Micro businessman, Leroy Johnson of Planter, St. Catherine, has had his dream of fame fortune and the delivery of a good home grown Jamaican product boosted through the support of the Social Development Commission’s social Engineering programme the Local Economic Development Support Programme (LEDSP) . Now he has high hopes of being a successful entrepreneur in the local fine-furniture business producing Wicker Craft.
Mr. Johnson, who dreamt big of operating his own Wicker weaving furniture manufacturing business recently received grant funding from the SDC through it’s LEDSP now has his own manufacturing company and is now in a position to deliver fine indoor and outdoor wicker furniture.
The Local Economic Development Support Programme (LEDSP) is an imitative of the Social Development Commission (SDC), a agency of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.
The LEDSP programme has four component used to achieve its overall goal. These include Capacity Building through which Community groups and Local Economic initiatives (LEIs) benefit from capacity building activities that will enable them to develop business models and other documents, and manage existing local economic initiatives effectively.
Other components include Networking, Marketing and Partnership Building; a critical activity used to assist LEIs in expanding their networking platform and increasing sales is the Business Fairs/Expositions, Economic Night Fairs and Pop – Up Shops. Implementation of an Incentive Scheme Assistance is be provided via the SDC’s Community Incentives Grant facility to provide financial support for LEIs
Mr. Johnson says the grant was a major game changer for him, his business and his future as it allowed him to purchase some critical equipment.
With the grant funding Mr. Johnson bought a chainsaw, jigsaw, small tools & equipment chain saw, circular makita saw, drill, saws, spray-gun. He also procured drills, a sander, a circular saw, spray machine, wood chisel, refined products, sander. These allow him to significantly increase his output thus increasing revenue steams as the business has ventured into other areas such as wood Furniture making because of the acquired tools.
“ — Mr. Johnson quote)
Wicker is traditionally made of material of plant origin, such as willow, rattan, reed, and bamboo, but synthetic fibers are now also used. Wicker is light yet sturdy, making it suitable for items that will be moved often like porch and patio furniture.