From Board Structure to Bigger Business… Ambitious Vendor gets Boost from HTB for Easter

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Orraine Rattray started selling snacks, buns and biscuits from a small stall in front of his Portland Road home in 2020 when his usual taxi operations were affected by the pandemic. 

In the grips of the earliest and most uncertain days of the pandemic, Oraine Rattray became one of many Jamaicans who had to pivot to survive. Now, two years after he started, he’s determined to put some structure into his street vending side-hustle, and he has gotten a boost from HTB just in time for the Easter season. 

Rattray who had always earned a living driving taxis was stumped when nearly all business came to a halt in the 2020 lock downs. He said that finding a way around that did not come easy, and it took a while to get used to the ins and outs of selling goods.

"Me feel like that was the best way fi gwaan elevate myself and gwaan do something," he said. "A deh so it basically start."

His new business, selling everything from clothes and snacks, to breads and buns, was an instant hit for passersby and neighbours who were also stuck within his Franklin Town community. And with 6 children and a partner relying on him he said that the "little board structure" was a Godsend. 

"It wasn’t nothing big but it take care ah we," he added. 

As things slowly began to return to normal, he realised that having another source of income might not be so bad at all. 

"Even now you see me ah go back on the road ah do the taxi work, me still have to make sure me likkle stall up and running.  One hand can’t clap so me have to focus on it and remember my baby mother deh here so she can eventually run that while I’m on the road," Rattray said.

The ultimate goal for him is to slowly build up his stall and eventually open up a shop in place of it, right there on his home property. And later, Rattray believes that it could fund a wholesale. But in the meantime, he said that the unexpected donation from National Bakery’s HTB Bun is right on time for his plans. 

HTB, as part of an Easter campaign to give back to customers and vendors, donated a couple trays of Easter buns to him help stock up for the season and the company has committed to providing him with a brand new stall. 

Expressing his gratitude to HTB and National for helping solve his 2 immediate issues, stock and a sturdy stall, he said, "From me heart, me appreciate it. Sometimes you nah expect nothing and then something just come. Come in like ah God. So from me heart, me really appreciate it.”

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