May 20, 2004 - Bancroft Times 

Kathy Gray is an energetic entrepreneur, who has managed to find a satisfying way to have the best of both worlds, balancing her family life with her work life.  She grins when she says that running a home-based business and being a stay-at-home mom is the “best work I’ve ever done – I love being at home.”  With an attitude like that, it’s no wonder she’s the winner of a 2004 Community Futures Business Achievement Award.
Originally from Wilberforce, Kathy has lived and worked in the Bancroft area since 1984.  She and her husband, Vaughn, have identified their number one priority as their son, Jason, who is now in grade one.  Kathy started to explore avenues that would combine her desire to be at home for her son, while having the flexibility of doing the hairstyling work she loved, scheduled around her family’s timetable.
The Bancroft Human Resources Skills Development Canada (HRSDC) office advised her that she qualified as a Self Employment Benefit (SEB) candidate, a program funded by HRSDC and coordinated by Community Futures Development Corporation (CFDC).  The objective of the SEB Program is to promote self-sufficiency in the labour market through self-employment.  Kathy opened her business, “Colors, Cuts & Curls” in November of 2000 and has never looked back.
Kathy describes her cozy hairstyling salon in Cardiff as an "at home, personal, friendly atmosphere" with a private area for waxing and facials.  "Colors, Cuts & Curls" offers a full range of family hair care, with a growing client base of over 150 people from all over the area, including Coe Hill and Baptiste Lake.  About 25% of her clients have been with her since her days of hairdressing in Bancroft in the mid 80’s.  Kathy is a licensed hairstylist (qualified for hairdressing and barbering), who is also certified in waxing, manicures and pedicures.
“Being self-employed in a home-base business means that you really have to be motivated and stay focused.  This is your job; you have to put in the hours, do the paperwork.  It takes discipline and it’s a lot of work, but I love it.  This is exactly what I need in this stage in my life!”
Client Marion Carr, from Paudash Lake is very supportive.  “I’ve been a client of Kathy’s for two years.  She puts her best foot forward and tries to please you in a way that most people want.  I like to recommend Kathy to others because she listens to what her clients ask for and stays updated.
Keeping her education up involves attending at least 3 courses a year.  This year, that means the International Hair Show in Toronto in April, and cut and colour courses in Belleville in May and Peterborough in June.  All of that updating means she’s right on top of the latest trends and styles.
Contact Community Futures or Human Resources Development Canada for more information about the SEB (Self-Employment Benefit) Program.