Updated: March 12, 2020 11:37 AM
Created: March 11, 2020 10:02 PM
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Call it conscious capitalism. Here at Imprintable Solutions, Ink, they are printing with a purpose.
"My company is a service that's of service. That's how I would describe it," company president Tina Paradiso said.
Paradiso bought the company six and a half years ago. Located in the city's Neighborhood of the Arts, Imprintable Solutions, Ink is a printing, promotional products, and decorated apparel company.
"If you can imprint it, if you can put ink on it, that is something that we can print," Paradiso said.
Of course that means shirts and hats, but also pens, pencils, lanyards, labels and just about anything else you can think of.
"Brochures, water bottles, mugs, bags, reusable bags are huge right now," she added.
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On the day we visited, the automated embroidery machine was stitching logos for the Seneca Park Zoo.
Paradiso also showed us their mobile printing machines, which they take to events and can print t-shirts and tote bags.
"You can actually take your cell phone, pick a picture, send it to the machine, and we print your garment in three to five minutes," Paradiso said.
But Imprintable Solutions is more than a company that prints logos on merchandise. As we mentioned, they are printing with a purpose.
And some folks working here are at the core of that mission.
"When you're doing business with us, you're not just buying a tchotchke item," Paradiso said. "You're not just getting an embroidered vest, right? You're having the opportunity to impact somebody's life. That's big."
They do that by offering internships to at-risk or disconnected young people, age 16 to 24. The program, called Imprinting Lives, helps them learn skills and build job readiness.
"We're helping them work on not just the soft skills of learning a trade and learning technical skills and processes and communicating with people different than self, but they're also working on their next steps," she said.
Those next steps may be getting their GED or passing a driver's test. And while here, the interns are also helped in developing life skills like setting up a bank account, and given basic needs support. The internships generally last six to nine months.
"If they are not to their next step when their internship is technically over, we do employ them until they are ready for their next step," Paradiso said.
Right now, Paradiso has 10 employees and five interns working at the shop.
Building a sustainable business — while lifting up others to share in that success.
"I love hearing our machines run," Paradiso said. "That means that we have orders that we're working on. That means we're growing as a company. That means there's going to be one more young person that will be able to be employed."
The company also transforms sails and turns them into bags. Known as Sailor Bags, the bags are made from the Dacron sails then embellished by Imprintable Solutions, Ink.
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