Hiscox Small Business Corner: Cardinal Learning Center

November 27, 2013

Read how the owner of the Cardinal Learning Center turned her passion for helping those with developmental disabilities into a business.

The Hiscox Small Business Corner serves as an outlet to highlight companies and the business owners who lead them. So far, we’ve featured technology companies, media companies and more. Today’s feature is the Cardinal Learning Center. Cardinal is a social and human services organization serving individuals with developmental disabilities in the Ohio tri-state area. Founder Felicisa Evans-Dangerfield turned her passion for helping those with developmental disabilities into a business that allows individuals to  maintain a sense of independence. Read below for Felicisa’s insight on how Cardinal become the business it is today.

Tell us more about the Cardinal Learning Center? Cardinal is unique because it specializes in programming and services for developmental disabled children, beginning at the age of five into adulthood. There are not many agencies that specialize in providing care for individuals from such a young age. Cardinal began it’s journey as a special needs charter school, but evolved into a social and human services organization. Families who use the services of Cardinal also benefit from the fact that the facility is open 24/7. Cardinal is always here when needed because we never close! What encouraged you to become a business owner? I learned that a number of families with children and adults with developmental disabilities needed assistance outgrowing my status as an independent provider to this community. I wanted to provide as many families as possible with the care they needed. Many families were searching for assistance, and often times felt lost about which agency to go to for help. One of the first families I served through Cardinal involved a mother who had to take a leave of absence in order to provide care for her child. I quickly learned of the challenges that families who care for those who are developmentally disabled encounter. Each family member is often faced with extreme amounts of sacrifice. By opening Cardinal Learning Center, I was now in a position to provide families the opportunity to maintain their “individualism” for each member of the family. What advice would you share with other business owners? First and foremost, make sure you are properly protected. This means having the proper small business insurance, a lawyer, etc. Also, business owners should be flexible. Often, the initial business plan will change. Overall, business owners should never forget why they started their journey in the first place. What is your secret to success? I contribute Cardinal’s business success to my faith, my husband and family and the families which Cardinal serves. Having a solid team, such as the staff members at Cardinal, is also a big contribution to business success. For more information about the Cardinal Learning Center, visit www.Cardinal-Learning-Center.org or call the facility directly at (513) 260-3193.