Entrepreneur Spotlight Feature (March) Christine Eruokwu

Christine Eruokwu

Christine Eruokwu
Kaima Designs

Christine’s entrepreneurial journey is a testament to her boundless ambition, compassion, and commitment to making a difference in the world. Her story is not just one of personal triumph but also of empowering others and uplifting communities.

Two years following her graduation with an MBA from the University of New Brunswick Saint John, specializing in Entrepreneurship and Technology Management, Christine embarked on a mission to celebrate her African heritage and promote the vibrant colours of African designs through her fashion brand, Kaima Designs. But her vision went beyond creating beautiful clothing; it was deeply rooted in her desire to support young vulnerable girls in West Africa, a cause inspired by her own mother’s painful experience as a child bride.

Launching Kaima Designs in 2017 was no easy feat, especially for a non-permanent resident like Christine. With limited access to funding opportunities, she had to rely on sheer determination and grit to bootstrap her way through the initial stages of her business. However, her perseverance paid off when she finally secured funding from Black Business Initiative (BBI) in 2022, followed by support from Black Business Professionals Association (BBPA) in 2023 through the BAIDS program, enabling her to expand her reach and impact.

But Christine’s entrepreneurial journey didn’t stop there. In 2021, driven by her passion for empowering immigrants and visible minority groups, she co-founded the United Colours of Fashion (UCOF) alongside her friend Rufina Ajalie. This non-profit organization is dedicated to breaking down barriers to vocational training, education, employment, and entrepreneurship opportunities for newcomers, providing them with a platform to showcase their talents and pursue their passion in the fashion industry.

The UCOF Sewing Hub Project has become a beacon of hope for participants from diverse backgrounds, offering them not only practical skills but also a sense of community and belonging. Each year, the UCOF Fall Fashion Festival serves as a celebration of their achievements, with participants showcasing their designs alongside established fashion designers and retailers on the runway.

In addition to her entrepreneurial endeavors, Christine dedicates her time and energy to her full-time role as Manager of the Newcomer Program at PRUDE, where she tirelessly works to support newcomers in their personal and professional development, helping them integrate into their new community.

Despite her many responsibilities, Christine remains rooted in Saint John with her family, serving as a shining example of resilience, compassion, and the transformative power of entrepreneurship with a purpose. As she continues to blaze a trail in the fashion industry and beyond, her impact will undoubtedly be felt for generations to come.

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