Readers Digest spoke with Desriee Asomuyide, founder of children’s educational resource company, Little Omo
Readers Digest (RD): How did Little Omo get started, and how would you best summarise what you offer?
Desriee Asomuyide (DA): Little Omo was founded in September 2020, after I becoming a first-time mother to my son Isaiah. I noticed the lack of diverse racial representation in areas within the early years education and realised that there was a problem. Having earned a Bachelor's degree in Fashion Design, I used this opportunity to create flashcards that represented my son and other ethnic minority children. Little Omo stands by its values; it aims to cultivate an inclusive environment where children can see themselves while playing and learning. Currently, Little Omo stocks face puzzles, parts of the body flashcards, alphabet flashcards and posters, all aiming to represent children of today.
Desiree and her son Isaiah
RD: There’s a lot of kids educational resources out there—what makes Little Omo so important? How does flashcard play help to encourage a child’s development?
DA: Little Omo was the UK's first educational brand to ever create flashcards that represented black or brown children. Flashcards can help children in many ways from teaching them words, colours, sounds, objects and most importantly solving a problem which is allowing young children to be learn and be culturally aware of individuals from different backgrounds, with different skin complexions and hair types.
We’re also really passionate about sustainability and creating products that will not damage the environment. Our shipping boxes are 100% recyclable and wrapped with brown biodegradable kraft paper. Our flashcards products are made from FSC certified paper, and our face puzzles are also made from FSC wood.
Little Omo specialises in inclusive educational products that represent children of colour
RD: What does a typical workday look like for you?
DA: A typical workday for me is dropping my son to nursery early in the morning and then heading back to the office to pack orders, take meetings, speak to suppliers and plan the next products and goals for the business. I love coming up with different ideas, developing products, creating shoots and the overall feeling of seeing how my brand is progressing.
RD: What do you like to do to switch off?
DA: I love visiting spas to help me relax as much as possible. I am also a big fan of fashion! Prior to launching my brand I had a fashion blog, regularly sharing my looks and the latest fashion trends.
RD: What has been the most valuable business lesson you’ve learnt so far? And what has been your most tangible achievement?
DA: Having people from all over the world ordering from Little Omo and understanding the importance of the brand. I’ve learnt that business is not easy; juggling a one year old and starting a brand has been a challenge. But I’m happy with how far I’ve come with Little Omo in such a short space of time, and I’m looking forward to the future.
RD: What would you like that future to look like?
DA: I would love to see my brand in notable retailers such as John Lewis, Hamleys and Selfridges. I would also like to have built a team and see my brand used by many schools and families from different background and cultures worldwide. Seeing how my brand has created impact and helped children like my own to be represented in educational resources has really allowed me to see just how much a product like this is needed.
RD: And where would you like to see the wider industry? What does true representation look like to you?
DA: People from different backgrounds represented not only in educational flashcards and books, but on TV, in magazines, in the workplace. It’s important to have representation in all different industries. Diversity is important to see, not only for kids but adults too. I would love the next generation of children from ethnic minorities to grow up seeing themselves represented everywhere.
To learn more visit Little Omo
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