Vicky Trotter's Young Entrepreneurs for Global Change

Vicky Trotter owns and operates Trotters Cleaners in the Glenville neighborhood. But she does more than remove stains and starching shirts. She is cleaning up her neighborhood and ironing out problems. She teaches youth entrepreneurship classes on Saturdays in the space next to her dry cleaner. She begins the classes by teaching her students about how their ancestors overcame barriers with courage, hard work and personal responsibility.

Vicky’s dream was to take her students to the opening day of the Martin Luther King Memorial in Washington D.C. She explained that youth gain confidence when they know these strengths are part of their heritage. She also believes that teens set higher goals for themselves once they experience life beyond their own neighborhoods. With a grant from Inner Visions of Cleveland she was able to take eight students and four adults to Washington DC for the opening events. Inner Visions was also able to arrange for the students to take a tour of the Capital.

Each student was given a journal to keep so they could record their experiences. Shortly after returning from the trip the students were interviewed live on 1490 Talk Radio. They said they were proud to see that there is finally a monument in Washington D.C. dedicated to the accomplishments of an African American. They each are working towards having their own accomplishments recognized one day.

Stay tuned for Vicky’s future projects. She is going to be building a greenhouse on the property next to Trotters Cleaners. The run-off heat from her dryers will be routed below raised growing tables so students can grow crops year-round.