Teens can earn money by choosing self-employment

Friday, March 27, 2009 | 12:01 a.m. CDT

As summer nears and competition for work increases, entrepreneurial jobs may be the best bet for students who can't find a regular job and want to earn money over the summer.

Here are some ideas:

  •  Lawn Care: Offer lawn services to neighbors. Create fliers and distribute them around your  neighborhood to let people know you're available.
  • Babysitting: Be a resource to your friends and community while having some fun. Parents who seek familiar child care without major costs may be happy to hire you.  Experience with children is recommended; the American Red Cross Mid-Missouri Chapter offers babysitting training courses for 11- to 15-year-olds at a low cost.
  • Home care: Offering just a part of your day to clean or organize a person’s home — especially garages and basements — can bring in more money than you might expect. Make your services even more attractive by offering to haul away discarded items.
  • Pet-sitting and/or dog-walking: If you’re an animal lover, this can be a fun way to earn money doing what you enjoy. Watching, walking and feeding pets while their owners are away can earn you cash. Dog-walkers might earn as much as $10 per hour. Pet-sitters charge about $15 per day but make it add up by taking on more than one pet at a time.
  • Recycling: Not only will you earn money, but you will be helping the environment when you collect containers and other recyclable items.
  • Errand-running: If you can drive, you can offer to run errands for people who may not be able to themselves. A good driving record is recommended.
  • Camps/workshops: Check out local summer camp positions and workshops in Columbia where extra or temporary help might be needed. One opportunity could be posting fliers in town to advertise events.
  • Outdoor work: Take advantage of the sun in Columbia this summer and help out as people paint their homes or do other outdoor home improvements.
  • Party planning:  Offer services in valet parking, decorating, serving or helping to clean up after local parties. Involve your friends and turn yourselves into a party crew.
  • House sitting: Some people hate to leave their homes empty (and their plants unwatered) while they're away on vacation. Post an ad on Craigslist, or take out an ad in the local newspaper advertising your services. Be prepared to provide references.

 Some ideas were provided by The Associated Press.


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