Antinette Watson, a proud resident of the City of Wilmington, was tired of losing young people, especially young men, to violence in her community. She thought about how she could be the change she wanted to see in her community and realized she could create her version of Cheryl’s Water Ice, a family-owned business founded by her grandfather in 1994. 

In 2018, Antinette founded The Stand De, a chain of mobile food carts that also offers career training for teens. Through her work at The Stand De, young adults have the opportunity to gain the work and life experiences Antinette received growing up, but on an elevated level.

“We started with one cart, which has expanded to two carts and one trailer. It’s our goal to obtain a physical location by 2023,” Antinette says.

In 2021, Antinette officially launched The Stand Life & Workforce Development Program. In her first cohort, three teens success

fully completed the program and gained critical skills to help steer them towards successful lives, both personally and professionally.

“I enjoyed being involved in The Stand Life Program. Being involved in the program helped me meet new people, improve my social skills, increased my confidence in managing money, and prepared me for future work experiences. What I enjoyed most was meeting and talking to the customers,” says a teen graduate of The Stand Life & Workforce Development Program.

At the start of 2022, Antinette launched a second cohort of seven teens. She aims to double the size of the current cohort this September. Recruitment for the third cohort will begin this August. For additional information, visit The Stand’s Facebook or email [email protected]

If you are looking to experience great food, while supporting a great cause, please consider:

  1. Booking The Stand De for your next private, corporate, or community event. 
  2. Motivate, inspire, and educate teensby becoming a speaker and/or mentor for The Stand’s Life & Workforce Development Program. 

To learn more about how you can help The Stand De in their efforts to offer delicious, affordable meals while providing positive experiences and workforce training to teens, contact [email protected] or check out their Facebook or Instagram.

Check out The Stand De’s interview and hear the success stories on Good Morning Wilmington.