When Hurricane Harvey hit in 2017, Rahel Abraham lost her vehicle. Shortly after, she left her job – leaving her “starting from scratch,” with something she calls “a blessing in disguise.” “I was in my home and my vehicle was flooded during Hurricane Harvey. I could not evacuate because the street level was lower than the actual home. During that time, I had a very helpless feeling and did not want to be in that situation again. I wanted to create a more practical solution to be prepared.”
After being a victim to natural disaster and recognizing a true problem, she was determined to design a solution to guard against extreme weather and to protect individual’s valuables. Poised for success in the establishment of her product and having a background in both chemical and environmental engineering, Rahel had the technical capability to create the product she knew would help so many. After years of research and development, she launched ClimaGuard, a 360-degree protective enclosure and the ultimate extreme weather protection for vehicles and home valuables.
Launching in 2020 led to obstacles, and the inventory was hard to establish due to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Rahel had envisioned having products in hand by the spring of 2020, however, inventory was not ready until well into the later portion of the year, when hurricane season was already underway. The company was looking for a solution.
When Rahel heard about the Harris County Small Business Relief Fund, she immediately applied. The LiftFund grant helped carry ClimaGuard through until sales were able to launch successfully. The funds served as a buffer, helping the company move forward until the next selling season approached. “LiftFund’s intention is to help small businesses as a way to support them financially and also give them access,” she says.
The company is thriving and is now selling product internationally. Rahel and her team are constantly thinking about what is next for ClimaGuard. Her goal is to make people feel more empowered and to be prepared for extreme weather events. She says, “What inspires me is knowing that I’m in a business that’s going to not just make me independent, but also help people. You can create meaningful work that also adds purpose and wealth.”
With the success of ClimaGuard’s protective enclosure against flooding, the company is seeking to expand and to create additional products to help with other damaging weather events, such as hail.
Rahel’s has one piece of advice to those seeking to create their own business venture: “think about the end goal and don’t focus so much on what everyone else is doing. Just be really clear on your end goal and work towards that.”