Welcome to Spikeyhairs!
My name is Paul Richard, MA, LCPC, the founder of Spikeyhairs. Spikeyhairs is a small, family owned business based upon the Spikeyhair characters created by my grandson, Tyler, who lives with a mild form of Autism. Tyler is now an active and happy 8-year-old-boy who is currently most interested in computers. He has already taught himself how to create Powerpoint presentations, and he has just recently begun teaching himself how to write batch files. Tyler is also a prolific artist and started drawing his Spikeyhairs characters around age 5, inspired by his father’s Mohawk hairstyle. I adopted my son, Lance, the father of Tyler and his sister, Madison, when he was 16 years old. I also have another adopted son, Tim. I am licensed in the state of Illinois as a Clinical Professional Counselor and as a certified school counselor. After my position was cut at the alternative school at which I worked, I spent much of my time focusing on taking care of Tyler and Madison while thinking about what to do next with my career. It was during that time that I developed the idea to make Tyler’s drawings into a family business. But it was Tyler’s kind and generous nature that made me realize we had to share the rewards of the business he inspired with other children, who like him, live with Autism on a daily basis, by always donating some of the profits we receive. Having a business like Spikeyhairs is the best way I know to help as many people with Autism was we can.
Our goal is to grow Spikeyhairs into a thriving family business with Tyler as the inspiration. It is our hope that as he grows older he will have a more direct role until one day he is able to take over and be the leader of his own successful company. Our wish is to provide him with a career and a lifestyle that will allow him to achieve the highest level of independent adult functioning he is capable of achieving. And if we grow large enough, we hope to be able to provide job opportunities to others living with Autism as well.
Our mission is to help other children and families, like our own, who live with Autism on a daily basis. To that end, Spikeyhairs will always donate at least 25% of the profits from the sales of Spikeyhairs merchandise to charities and organizations that directly benefit such families. And as our business grows, so too will our commitment to raising and donating as much money as we can to help people living with Autism to achieve whatever dreams they have. This may not be the most effective business model, but it is a business model that we are very proud to follow.
Our plan is to sell merchandise based upon Tyler’s Spikeyhair characters. We also plan to have special sales and fundraising events in which up to 100% of the profits will be donated. In addition to the Spikeyhair plush toy, we have many other ideas for Spikeyhairs products. Tyler is particularly anxious for us to produce a Spikeyhair mouse pad! But it all starts with the original Spikeyhairs plush toy.
What we want to achieve:
It is our hope that our Spikeyhairs business will do more than just raise awareness of Autism. The entire concept of Spikeyhairs came from the imagination of my grandson, Tyler, who is also my business partner. We agreed that he created the Spikeyhairs, and I created Spikeyhairs the company. As Tyler grows older he is becoming more aware of his Autism. His creation of the Spikeyhairs is just one of the ways we are helping him learn to move past the limits of his Autism and realize all of the wonderful things he is capable of achieving. We also want others to see what a child with Autism can achieve. I think Tyler being the president of his own company one day would be a pretty cool way to show the world what a person with Autism can do.
Through Spikeyhairs we also want to provide support to other agencies and organizations that help children with Autism and their families. We are currently planning our first local fundraising event to benefit the Autism Program in Tyler's school district, and hope to make such events a regular part of our business.
How you can help:
We need your help to bring the Spikeyhairs to life! Your contributions will go towards producing the items we are offering as perks, particularly the first Spikeyhair plush toy. If we meet our funding goal we will be able to put the first Spikeyhairs plush toy into production as a limited-edition item. And if we exceed our funding goal, we will use the extra money for other business expenses, such as incorporating our business and developing new Spikeyhairs merchandise. We are doing this as an all-or-nothing funding campaign because the goal we set is the minimum amount of money we need to produce the items we are offering as perks. This approach assures that we will be able to deliver all of the perks we are offering.
As perks we are offering some of our first Spikeyhairs items being produced, as well as some unique items. At various levels of perks we are offering an 8x10 print of Tyler’s original Spikeyhair drawing, silicone Spikeyhairs wristbands, Spikeyhairs shirts and of course, the limited-edition original Spikeyhair plush toy. If we meet our goal the number of Spikeyhair plush toys produced will be enough to cover all of the perks, but we must place a minimum order of 500. We will produce more if necessary, but if less than 500 are claimed the remaining Spikeyhair plush toys will be sold at a later date. I will also keep a small number of them for future special sales and fundraising events. After this production run, no more Spikeyhairs in this color and style combination will be produced, so don’t miss out on this opportunity to own one (or more). We chose orange for the first Spikeyhair because it is Tyler’s favorite color!
At some of the higher level perks we are offering added bonuses. Starting at $100 your 8x10 print will be signed by Tyler. Starting at $250 you can personalize your t-shirt. And at $1000 you will receive an original, one-of-a-kind Spikeyhair drawing by Tyler, which he will sign just for you (limit 5).
We are asking contributors to add extra money for shipping. Shipping charges would eat up a very large portion of the funds we are trying to raise. Your contributions are not just going towards the purchase price of the perks. You are making a contribution to help get the Spikeyhairs business off the ground. In order to have funds left over to keep the business going after all of the perks have been fulfilled, we need to keep our costs as low as possible. Adding the extra money for shipping is just another way to help us launch the Spikeyhairs brand. The bigger we grow the more people with Autism we will be able to reach out and help. We hope you understand and thank you for the extra support!
We also want to mention that while it is the policy of Spikeyhairs to always donate at least 25% of the profits from the sales of Spikeyhairs merchandise, we do not plan at this time to donate any of the money obtained through this fundraiser. The reason is to maximize the amount of money we have to move forward after the fundraiser. However, we will donate at least 25% of the profits from any Spikeyhairs merchandise that is unclaimed during the fundraiser and later sold. Our donation policy will also apply to all merchandise we produce for sale from the money obtained during the fundraiser.
Other ways to help:
We know times are tough and giving money isn’t always a possibility. These past few years have been tough on our family as well, so if you don’t have any money to give we completely understand. But you can still help us out if you like what we are doing. The most important way you can help is to spread the word around about Spikeyhairs. You can tell your friends, your family and co-workers. You can “like us” on your Facebook page and try to link us to as many people as you can. With the numbers of children being diagnosed with Autism continuing to rise, it has been my experience that many people have someone in their lives with Autism. At this early stage of our business, just getting the word out is vital to the future success of our company. So please, even if you can’t contribute money, you can still make an extremely important contribution to our success. Tell everyone you know about Spikeyhairs and watch us grow! Thank you!