Nina Hampton is a passionate teacher who has found a brilliant company called Panda Post Learning. This small, local company based in Cape Town provides educational learning boxes for children. Her products are creative, fun and help kids (and moms!) to learn in the comfort of their own home. It is a brilliant idea and one she has nurtured into a thriving business. Next year, Nina will do this fulltime. Please support her! Her website is www.pandapost.co.za and you can check them out on Facebook.
Tell us about Nina.
I’m a wife, mother and teacher and have been teaching for 14 years. I love spending time in nature, walking, hiking, swimming and camping and feeling connected to God’s creation. My favourite pass time is drinking tea and reading, which I don’t’ get to do as often as I’d like to anymore! My new found passion is yoga, which I started a few weeks ago and am totally addicted! Yoga is a great combination of physically exertion and relaxation, which I find is a great way to take “time out” from my daily life and destress.
How did Panda Post come about?
I have been wanting to start my own business for a while but hadn’t found exactly what I wanted to do. I’ve always wanted to own a children’s bookshop and started doing research into children’s bookclubs, which lead me to discover subscription boxes and the idea of delivering carefully curated activities to your door to do with your children which arrive on a regular basis. Children’s books are still a big passion of mine and I still plan to source and ultimately import a small but amazing selection of children’s books.
What’s next for Nina and this business?
My business only launched in May 2018 so is very much in its infancy. I’m leaving my fulltime teaching job and will be pursuing Panda Post full time from January 2019. My plan is to work on my business in the mornings while my son is at school and spend the afternoons with him. I’m looking forward to growing my business, launching new products and diversifying to go into Nanny Training Workshops from March 2019. I’ll be working with other professions to put these together and can’t wait to get stuck into the planning and running of these. I hope to work with local artisans to create my own line of wooden and handmade children’s educational toys.
Who has inspired you to create this product?
I’m inspired by all the children and parents I have worked with in my job as a teacher, plus by my own son. I’ve realised that parents often feel overwhelmed with where to even start doing educational activities with their children and often tend to want to do worksheets or flashcard with their young children, when they should rather be doing play-based activities. Or they see all these great ideas on Pinterest and have the best intentions but don’t have the time and energy to put the resources together to carry them out. More and more parents are also looking for locally made and sustainable products and I hope to provide these.
Where do you see yourself in five year’s time?
I hope to have a flourishing small business that allows me to help provide for my family but also allows me the time and flexibility to spend quality time with my family too. I would love to be able to support someone in the local community by providing a full time job for someone. I ultimately want my products to be unique, locally made and environmentally friendly.
What are you currently reading?
I have just started THE HIDING PLACE by Corrie Ten Bloom. I’m looking forward to getting stuck into it when I’m with my parents in PE for the holidays, Panda Post is closed and I have more time to read!
One wish for South Africa.
That we all come to know that we are created by the same God and learn to feel and show empathy and love for each other.