Young Fashion Fund
Sabina Montinar is a Merchandising Executive with a love for fashion and creativity. She holds a bachelor’s in Merchandising and Product Development from Florida State University. She looks to lead and inspire in the retail industry. Montinar is supporting the industry she love by empowering future diverse creatives in beauty and fashion. As she said “Merchandising is not a job, it is a part of my life.”
Young Fashion Fund is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to expanding the world of fashion; empowering and educating underrepresented diverse women pursuing fashion and beauty leadership opportunities.
Young Fashion Fund is focused on increasing diverse talent in the fashion and beauty industry. We look to recognize graduating high school and college creatives through our scholarships, mentorship, internship opportunities and brand ambassador program.
What motivated you to start you business?
In 2014 I started a blog to talk about the evolution of personal style and how your personal style told your story and created your personal identity. Through that blog I got the idea to do a scholarship. My personal style has been a journey and I was proud where I had been but I wanted to support someone else and their story. So I created the Up and Comer Scholarship, giving spotlight to a rising beauty/fashion student. I personally supported one student in my home town, Naples, FL, with a $150 gift card and gift bag of beauty goods. Surprising this deserving student has been by far the greatest accomplishment in my career. This year I want to evolve the blog and scholarship and support the growing topic in fashion, where is the diversity?
YOUNG FASHION FUND is being created to help diverse up and coming creatives who seek a career in fashion or beauty with support through scholarships and internships. I want to take that small idea I had last year and turn it into a full scholarship that can provide support to multiple students each year. I want to expose our creatives to corporate leaders and entrepreneurs. Exposing them to opportunities they can create, giving them another point of view to leadership and achievement.
As a Haitian woman in business, what are the challenges you faced as a business owner and how do you overcome them?
My main challenge as a business owner specifically as a nonprofit business is raising funds to support our programs and getting press to expand our business’s audience. We are a newly established business so it difficult to gain momentum starting something people have never heard of.
How does your business relates to the Haiti or Haitian community?
I am Haitian women that is bringing to light opportunities in a creative industry. For most Haitians, a career in creativity is not an option or people don’t think it can be a successful option. Young Fashion Fund is excited to strategically partner with Haitian entrepreneurs and executives to bring success stories to light. If YFF can be a platform to help other young Haitian creatives to follow their heart’s in creativity, then I have done my job.
In your opinion, why is it important for the Haitian community to support Haitian owned businesses ?
I think it is important for the Haitian community to support Haitian businesses because it will help spread the word of the great things Haitians are doing. I think social media and the media in general can use a flood of the amazing talents Haitians have. I personally just love reading, seeing, and hearing successes stories, the fact that they are Haitian people in the forefront makes it even better.