The gig economy is booming and for good reason. With rampant inflation-induced layoffs plaguing full-time workers all over the country, it’s no surprise that more people are turning to freelance projects to make ends meet. But as rewarding as it can be, freelancing can be grueling, because every day you don’t work, you don’t get paid.
On National Freelancer Day (March 10), Robinhood is aiming to give them a bit of reprieve.
The democratized investing platform recently launched a new IRA with a 1% annual match on eligible contributions* tailor-made for the gig economy and in celebration, they’re giving up to 500 freelancers a paid day off. Helping to spread the word is Olamide Olowe, founder and CEO of skincare company Topicals.
The 26-year old knows all about being her own boss, considering she is the the youngest Black woman ever to raise more than $10 million in venture funding.
She’s partnering with Robinhood to help encourage others to be their own boss and help officially kick off Robinhood’s contest.
“The mindset of working in corporate America until you retire at 65 simply doesn’t work for my generation,” said Olowe in statement shared with ESSENCE. “Charting your own path allows you to have flexibility and professional freedom to pursue passion and purpose. But gig workers miss out on the financial benefits that often come with traditional employment, from workplace retirement plans with employer matches, to a paid day off.”
Olamide has continued to champion Black wealth generation and knows first-hand the challenges involved in working for oneself.
“People told me that Topicals shouldn’t exist,” said Olowe in a 2022 interview with ESSENCE. “They said that chronic skincare with a fun brand experience product didn’t work or it was too juvenile, or showing people with visible skin conditions would again scare people away, but obviously we’ve proven that wrong. And so I think there are times when you need to recalibrate and take information that you’ve gotten from investors and help build your pitch to be stronger and better and cleaner. And then there are other times where you actually just know that that investor isn’t the right one for you and you stand your ground in what you believe in.”
Nearly 36% of the US workforce freelancers and gig workers contribute more than $1.3 trillion to the US economy. Experts predict that they are poised to funnel even more in coming years as inflation reshapes living costs for Americans.
To learn more about National Freelancers Day and enter the contest, freelancers can visit nationalfreelancedayus.com and share what inspired them to become a freelancer.