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Kevin Jones, Founder and CEO of KJE, Inc. and Business In A BucketLA Urban League youth utilize Business In A Bucket
Kevin Jones’ program teaches youth how to combine labor, business and skills into tools for the future.
By Brian W. Carter, Sentinel Staff Writer
At times like these when jobs are few and idle minds can be dangerous, it’s good to have a program around that will keep kids engaged and busy. Kevin Jones and his wife, Marva, along with KJE, Inc., are giving youth tools for the future through Business in a Bucket (BIAB).
BIAB is a program designed by Jones to help youth form a present and future mindset for business and independence. The program literally is a manual in a bucket entitled “The Owner's Guide to Auto Detailing©.” The manual teaches how to detail a car, inside and out, with step-by-step instructions made easy.
Jones came up with the idea of the BIAB program through personal experiences. “My own story of growing up in New Orleans was filled with many challenges,” Jones stated.
“My father left when I was seven and my mother died in a car accident when I was 13 years of age. My grandmother was left to care for me and my siblings, five of us altogether. Growing up in the projects there were not very many positive role models for me to embrace. There were a few who had a profound impact on who I am today. “
Originally from the ninth ward of New Orleans, LA, Jones got his start thanks to a man by the name of Moses Bonds. “He asked me, ‘What was I going to do with my life,’” said Jones. Jones did not [?] have an answer at the time, so Bonds took it upon himself to teach Jones a trade.
“He taught me auto-detailing—he taught me how to paint, and different jobs,” said Jones. It was in 1989 when Jones came to Los Angeles and met Marva, his future wife. In 1993, Jones struggled to find work, so he put his skills to use in auto-detailing. This, in turn, would serve as a launching pad for his book, “The Owner’s Guide to Auto Detailing.”
Jones and his wife would later partner with Kit Car Care Products, in conjunction with his manual, and form BIAB. In 2001, Jones would establish KJE, Inc., with BIAB as a part of its program for youth.“The first project we did, we went out to the Los Angeles Urban League and we spoke to a bunch of youth,” said Jones. “They were really excited about that.”
As many youth programs began to be cut, the Urban League asked Jones and BIAB to return. The youth, who utilized the skills from BIAB, were able to apply them in the field and use them.
“We had them get out there and wash the cars, negotiate with the customer and talk with the customer,” said Jones. The kids then used the skills learned to help provide funding for the program for future youth to be a part of BIAB.
BIAB is a program designed to help anyone, male or female, generate immediate income. It’s not a program just about teaching labor skills but also about teaching business skills. The present-day economy has many people looking for ways to make ends meet. The youth population is particularly affected with an often bleak landscape on the horizon.
Jones and BIAB have plans to continue to help youth learn more about business and being self-sufficient. Jones is currently seeking partners in his endeavors to help youth help themselves.
“My ultimate goal is to team up with different organizations and trying to empower the youth,” said Jones. “Eventually I would like to have a facility, where young ones can come and be able to learn business skills and teach them.”
For more information to find out about Business in a Bucket and/or you can help, please contact KJE, Inc. at 714-995-6434, or by fax at 714-226-0963. You can visit their website at www.businessinabucket.net. You may also visit them on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Business-in-a-Bucket/348576069772.