Friday 19 July 2019

Ben Handrick is crowned Young Entrepreneur of the Year

Irish businesswoman Norah Casey and Ben Handrick
Irish businesswoman Norah Casey and Ben Handrick

Sara Gahan

A young Gorey man has received the 'Woman's Way/Pharmaton Children's Young Entrepreneur of the Year' award.

Ben Handrick (16) from Tinahely was presented the award from renowned Irish businesswoman and former dragon on Dragons Den Norah Casey for his mini-company 'Fridge Therapy' at a ceremony held last week in Airfield House.

The Children's Awards recognises young people who have shown great resilience, strength, talent and courage in overcoming obstacles and tackling very serious issues.

Ben, who is a student in Creagh College, created Fridge Therapy which is an innovative idea to help people communicate emotions and feelings through words. It is a tin that consists of 220 individual fridge word magnets that allow people to leave messages on the fridge to convey their state of mind to those around them. Messages such as 'I need help', 'being bullied' or simply 'I love you' can be constructed from the word magnets.

The inspiration came from Ben's own experience of being bullied in primary school. He was lucky as he could talk openly with his parents, but he thought what if he couldn't? Ben said it sometimes can be hard to find the right words to express yourself.

'Fridge Therapy makes these words available in a simple easily usable format,' said Ben. 'The kitchen is the heart of most households, a place we go for nourishment and comfort.'

If Fridge Therapy helps anyone cope better or be heard then Ben has succeeded.

'If a child, teenager or indeed an adult goes to the bother of physically constructing a sentence to leave as a message it holds weight,' said Ben.

A minimum of €1 from every tin of magnets sold is donated to ISPCC. Fridge Therapy can be purchased directly through Ben's website,

Fridge Therapy previously won a Merit Award at the 2018 National Student Enterprise Awards in the Senior Category.

Gorey Guardian