JUNCTION CITY, Kan. (KSNT) – A Junction City woman built a thriving business out of nothing. Now she’s using her success to inspire others around her.
Kevin Risby thinks pretty highly of his wife LaFarris.
“She’s remarkable, period,” Kevin said.
She owns Loving Arms Childcare, which is the largest black-owned business in Geary County. She’s also an author, public speaker, and business strategist.
While all that is remarkable, what makes it even more so is how she got there.
“I got to Junction City, Kansas in the dead of winter, in January. It was snowing,” LaFarris Risby said. “With me and my two children I had $50 and I had no place to live.”
LaFarris was a single mother with almost nothing and was going through a divorce from her abusive ex-husband. But she was determined to succeed for her kids.
“My daughter, I had her as a teenage mom, and she was 1 pound and 9 ounces. So I was used to working with kids,” LaFarris Risby said. “I knew I enjoyed that, but I didn’t know it was going to take me on the path it took me on.”
She started an in-home daycare and went back to school for educational degrees and certifications.
“I couldn’t have done it. With 2 kids. I don’t know if I would’ve had the courage or the strength or the faith to actually do that,” LaFarris Risby said.
For her, the key to success comes down to two things: faith and family.
“I don’t care what you accomplish in life. How many degrees you have, how many houses, how many buildings, how much money, how much money you have or don’t have,” LaFarris said. “At the end of the day if you don’t have a relationship with God and a relationship with your family, none of it matters.”
No matter how busy she gets family is her priority.
“Once she gets done at the end of the day it’s just about family, and she always leaves time out for that,” Kevin Risby said.
Now LaFarris has her sights set on helping others achieve their goals.
“Whatever I do, I want to go back and get that next person and bring them with me. Because I feel like that’s the journey,” LaFarris said. “If I succeed at something and I see you struggling, why not go back and help you so you can help someone else?”
Whether it’s through her autobiography, public speakings, or her work in childcare, she wants to inspire everyone around her to ‘Dare to Dream‘.
“You don’t have to stay a victim, you can be a victor. You can overcome any obstacle,” LaFarris said. “Yes, some days were easier than others. But at the end of the day, you can do it. Dare to dream, as big as you can think, as far as you can see, then look farther.”