A 9-year-old Bay Ridge girl has spent the pandemic in a charitable state of mind.
Gianna Solitario, who launched Gigi’s Creations more than a year ago, makes and sells bracelets and donates the proceeds to charity.
Solitario’s mother, Jillian Fezza, said she and her family are proud of what the business has become.
“It started out with just a few local customers, which now turned into us shipping to other states like Texas, Florida, Kentucky and more,” Fezza said. “Gianna has become a favorite face in our local post office.”
The business has gained followers on Instagram, and Solitario connected with Kidpreneurs, a book company that teaches children the basic principles of entrepreneurship and how to get started early.
Solitario, who attends St. Ephrem Catholic Academy, began making bracelets during the early days of the pandemic. Her line of customized mask holder necklaces is a big seller.
Thus far, she has donated more than $1,300 to various charities.
She also partnered for a fundraiser with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.
“Every month, we pick a different charity,” said Fezza. “Since August, we’ve donated to Sunrise Day Camp for Childhood Cancer Awareness, Save a Turtle Organization in Florida, Third on Third for a Cure, Grandma’s Love and Guild for Exceptional Children.”
The experience has been rewarding for Solitario and has helped her develop confidence.
“Gianna often refers to herself as a warrior now,” Fezza said. “She loves the whole process, from start to finish. Gigi loves picking out the bead color to create a bracelet design to packaging and then exchanging with the customer. She loves seeing their reactions.”