No home and no funding to pole dancing entrepreneur

Within two years of moving into a studio, Young and her venture Soul-POLE, a dance and fitness studio, was named the 'Grampian Business Awards emerging Entrepreneur of the year 2009' and the won the 'Highly Commended Health Destination Club and Gyms Category' Trend lifestyle Award, sponsored by David Lloyd, and Young is now considering franchising opportunities for her business, but the path has not been easy.

After living on the streets for several years, Young decided she wanted a better life for herself. She saw there was a massive gap in the female fitness industry and realised she could use her training as a pole dancer to fill this void. In 2007, Young launched Soul-POLE, from her flat in Aberdeen, Scotland. As a single mother with very little money, she faced many challenges in the beginning.

"I had no education and being a single mother made things very challenging so I could have just given up and at a few times I felt like it," says Young who stayed inspired by reading other successful entrepreneurs' books and learning they faced similar challenges.

She fixed up her flat, installed a pole in her living room and started accepting her first clients. Soul-Pole grew and about three and a half years ago Soul-Pole moved into its own studio and Young has hired four instructors.

Young thinks pole dancing can help woman build their self-confidence and. "You can get so strong both mentally and physically by doing pole for fitness, it works on a lot of levels and the way Soul-POLE does it is very holistic. We deeply work with our customers so that they transform their lives," she says.

Young is also a professional speaker and says this has helped her build her business. She says, "A lot of people are scared of pole dancing at first, speaking really brings in customers because they see that I am not some stick-thin blonde chick and they learn about my story."

Recently, Young published a book called "Teenage Kicks" that chronicles her difficulties living on the street as a young adult.

"I hope this book will give you a valuable insight into drug street culture, self-harm and self-abuse, how a person can come to a stage in their life where their worth is not realised, even by themselves," says Young.

She tells other entrepreneurs trying to start their own business, "Know what you want to do and realise it will take a lot of little steps to get there, but each step is really valuable because you learn the tools that will be very useful when you get to your destination."

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