Niki Burton is the CEO of Safe Spot, a not-for-profit organisation which aims to involve and educate children on their own safety. She is also the founder of Pure Heart Books and is an author, educator and social entrepreneur dedicated to saving lives and keeping kids safe.
“My journey as an entrepreneur began in one of the darkest times in my life,” says Niki. Trapped in an abusive and violent relationship, motherhood kept her occupied and gave her a sense of purpose, ensuring that her own well-being was the last in her priorities. “I hated what I was allowing in my life and what my children had to endure because of my own decisions. So, I began to write. I decided to make my kids the first people I’d help.” Within a few months Niki had her first four books ready, and realising that they could be just as valuable in healing others as they had been for her and her children, Niki self-published. Pure Heart Books are now used in early childhood, primary, high school, adult social services and by families throughout Australia and New Zealand, with more ready for release.
Even with the success of Pure Heart Books, Niki’s passion for helping others lead her to use her lessons learnt as a parent to assist other parents in child safety. Trying to find a safe way to get all 4 kids out of the car before crossing the road, Niki came up with the idea of the “Safe Spot” for the car. Based on Benjamin Franklin’s mantra of teaching and involving to create concrete, long-lasting knowledge, she launched a Safe Spot product range to keep kids safe and reduce stress for parents, later adding grief recovery resources into the range. “It was time to make our kids the educators, so that they in turn will educate parents, peers and community – fostering a safer, smarter next generation.”
But for Niki, it didn’t feel like enough to create empowering, lifesaving, affordable resources, and so she developed Safe Spot Community Programs to accompany her products. Today, Safe Spot is used across Australia and New Zealand, and Niki has visions of expanding it further to Europe, and even has its own superhero who visits schools and organisations to educate kids on their own safety.
On the subject of her success, Niki says, “I no longer doubt my purpose or value. I followed my heart, intuition and dreams – and made them all a reality. Successful people are often held on pedestals. Their failures and learning curves are rarely documented and it’s likely presumed their success came quickly or easily – or both. I know it to be different. Being an entrepreneur takes guts, determination, bravery and purpose. You have to be willing to make mistakes, learn and evolve. You have to be in it for the long haul. It’s taken me a few years to work out what works and how best I can help others. You can’t live a fulfilled life unless you do what makes you feel whole.”
You can find out more about Safe Spot at www.mysafespot.org/.