A long road to entrepreneurship
The food truck Doucès Pays (Delicious local food in Creole) has parked up in Avenue de Bourgogne in Etouvie, a district of Amiens, after a long journey. At 53 years old, Octavie Bellune has had several lives that have made her to what she is today: an entrepreneur who has created an activity that motivates her, cooking and more specifically West Indian cooking. “I passed my baccalaureate after the age of 30, because I had just got divorced”, she explains. “For 10 years, I was a customs broker in Martinique, then I came to France in 2016. I needed a change of scene.” When she arrived in Amiens, she started out as a temporary worker, but very quickly the idea of setting up her own business increasingly appealed. The BGE network encouraged her to take further qualifications in order to be able to work, which she did selflessly, accumulating a cookery vocational qualification, a professional qualification certificate for second-in-command chefs, and a BTS in management. “During the Covid period, I thought about what I really wanted and the idea of the food truck came up”, explains Octavie Bellune. “I canvassed the funding networks for the self-employed and arrived at France Active at the beginning of 2022.”
Structuring the project
With her characteristic tenacity, she attended all the association’s workshops, more than fifteen of them! “I wanted my project to be well structured, and the workshops allowed me to exchange with other project leaders”, she says. Since last August, her truck has been out on the streets of Amiens, an acquisition that she was able to make thanks to the France Active guarantee on her 10,000 euro bank loan. “As I was unemployed just before I started, I couldn’t get credit”, she says. “France Active was my guarantor with the bank.” She was also able to take out loans to buy her goods, some of which come from Martinique. Octavia Bellune’s days continue to be busy.
Her daily life as an entrepreneur
She gets up at 4 a.m. to prepare the hot dishes, accras, shrimps and chicken breast. With the help of her granddaughter, she then loads the dishes into the compartments in the food truck, which she has also fitted out, and serves her customers from 11 am to 2.30 pm and then from 6 pm to 9 pm. Customers have got used to seeing the Doucès Pays truck decked out in the colours of Martinique arriving from afar. Some of them now come especially from other districts of Amiens and even from Beauvais!
Focus on the Inclusion through Self-Employment programme
In March 2021, France Active responded to a call for projects launched by the French Ministry of Labour, Employment and Integration. On this occasion, France Active extended its Creation Pact with new support modules for the most fragile entrepreneurs, focussing on 4 themes:
And for young people aged 18 to 30, a bonus of €3,000.
This project benefited
Was accompanied by
France Active Picardie