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Young entrepreneur highlights her community

Shoal Lake teen combines photography skills, community pride in unique calendar project

Combining an interest in photography and pride in her hometown, Alexandra David of Shoal Lake has put together a calendar featuring original photos highlighting services and businesses available within the community.

It’s the second time that the 15-year-old has undertaken such a project.

“My parents, Stephen and Candace David, purchased a camera for my 13th birthday, as I expressed an interest in learning about photography,” she said. “Wanting to use my photos in something that could be shared somehow and in a way that could bring in profit, the calendar was initiated as it also made a great Christmas gift idea for those hard-to-buy-for people.”

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The first calendar included a collection of photos taken around the community during the different seasons. This time, David focused on the business sector.

“At first my goal was to put together one calendar, but with people asking in the spring if I would be doing another one, it sparked my interest to do a second, despite the time it takes,” said David, a Grade 10 student at Shoal Lake School.

“Needing to come up with a new idea for it not to be repetitive and wanting to put forth something that would be meaningful to a lot of people — like a keepsake — I focused on the business side of life. The calendar is titled Shoal Lake Proud — the ABC Calendar of Shoal Lake Businesses.

“Enough can’t be said for community pride and I feel Shoal Lake is a great community,” said David. “I thought it would be nice to create something familiar for the residents.”

Businesses and community have been exceptionally warm to her calendar ideas, she said. Along with permission to photograph storefronts, a number have expressed interest in purchasing a calendar and/or selling them at their place of business. Everyone was on board and through the support, it provided the sense it was a worthwhile project idea.

“Over the past couple of years I have learned so many aspects of how a business works, which I feel will only aid in future goals, employment and financial dividends; things like coming up with an idea, market availability, taking out and paying back a loan, working with public, and taking risks,” said David, who is a member of the student council and the Youth in Philanthropy group.

Being involved in this type of goal-setting project, it’s not hard to see how her favourite school subject of art played a role in the design. Looking ahead to graduation, this career-driven teen has many interests and plans to attend either college or university, focusing on interior design, fashion industry, and/or technology applications.

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