A Calling & A Willingness to Listen
As a child, Paula Hock spent many days in her Aunt’s kitchen sharing stories and learning how to make southern pecan toffee. While her life’s journey has taken her many places, from an artist to a nurse, Paula always returned to the warm memories of that kitchen and her favorite sweet treat.
Toffee became a business for Paula about ten years ago, when she launched the Divine Art Toffee. She has seen success, even selling her toffees at Nashville’s Airport. But, she was called to do more – to give back to her community by launching a non-profit.
As a non-profit, Divine Art Toffee’s main goal is to provide a safe, judgement-free, and humanizing workplace for individuals who have successfully completed recovery programs or those with disabilities – a place where they can find meaningful employment on their journeys to well-being.
Paula knew that starting this new venture would be a challenge. So she reached out to Nashville’s entrepreneurial community to find help, which first came in the form of Rachael Schaffer, a lawyer she met at the Entrepreneur Center. Rachael helped her set up the non-profit, and has since joined the Board of Directors. Paula has not abandoned her willingness to seek advice, even as her wholesale business and non-profit have grown.
With opportunities to grow her wholesale business and the July launch of the Divine Art Toffee Café in East Nashville, Paula reached out to the Pathway Women’s Business Center for support. She worked with our team of mentors to talk through her opportunities and challenges for this latest chapter of her business.
With the help of this team of mentors and her Board of Directors, Paula is prepared for the next stage of her business. She envisions the café as a welcoming place for the entire community; much like her Aunt’s kitchen was to her. With a full menu of coffees, juices, and sandwiches – along with Paula’s welcoming smile – we know that the Divine Art Café will be a place where everyone feels welcome.
We’re looking forward to grabbing lunch at the café after its July opening. Until then, you can find more information about Divine Art Toffee online.