Yarrie Bangura's Journey

After having fled Sierra Leone with her family when she was only 10 years old, Yarrie focused on educating herself & graduated from university with a Bachelor of International Development. However, Yarrie felt like she was not giving back enough to the country that gave her a new beginning. She then decided to introduce a small part of her culture and life to Australia, her Aunty's ginger tonic which has been a traditional family recipe.

Having established a business, Yarrie was fortunate enough to get on a show on SBS, The Employables. This show gave her the opportunity to be around budding entrepreneurs & she was able to better focus and envision the direction of her business. As a result of the show, Yarrie was determined to mass produce Aunty's Ginger Tonic. She started her search for a local beverage manufacturer that she could trust with her formula, one who would produce quality goods & be affordable at the same time. Yarrie’sfirst stop was at a local beverage manufacturer in Wollongong.

Sadly, the price quoted was simply too high. Having noticed Yarrie feeling all disappointed and low, Jim, her partner, suggested her to take a bank loan. However, Yarrie was not comfortable with the idea as she was not too familiar with the banks. In the same week, at the Saturday market at Marrickville, Yarrie met, what she believes to be, her godsent angel. Rosyln was a customer at the market, who happened to be a food technologist & had experience with food product development. 

It so happened that Rosyln was looking to provide professional support to someone out of her circle, to give back and support a food startup, preferably someone from a refugee background. Yarrie was the fortunate candidate.  Rosyln was really keen on helping Yarrie on getting connected to the right manufacturer, so she contacted a few people to get to the right beverage manufacturer for Aunty’s ginger tonic. Rosyln has been a great help and guide throughout this journey.

A complete stranger to Yarrie has now become an integral part of her journey.