Full Name: Nedina Mehmedovic
Occupation: Owner and General Manager of Kids Zone Dubai
–How long have you lived in Dubai?
I live in Dubai 6 years.
-Before opening Kids Zone what were you doing?
I was a senior Account Manager in a financial institution and I decided to be a stay home mom after giving birth to my son and soon after my beautiful daughter.
-How did you have the idea about opening KIDS ZONE Play Area, did you plan it for a long time?
The idea of having a unique kids play area concept came to me after being blessed with a first and second child with a very short time gap. I had very few friends. My family and relatives are away in different parts of the world so I ended up spending a lot of time with my kids in different play areas socializing with other moms and trying to create new friends by attending different mom groups and classes. As a mother, I started observing many things, which I would change. I could offer a helping hand to the mothers going through the same crucial phase of their lives; having to give up their professional careers and taking a new and much more challenging one of becoming a mother.
The beautiful journey of parenthood can be overwhelming especially during the early stage when the first baby is just born and we suddenly turn into mothers.
Choosing to stay at home and giving up my professional career after delivering my son and soon followed by my beautiful daughter, raising my two kids for 3 years as a full time stay home mom, I reached a stage where I really felt the urge and desire to go back to work but it just seemed impossible with the 9AM to 6PM working schedule. The idea of Kids Zone was born right at this phase of my life.
My vision of Kids Zone is a place for moms to feel like a happy home and other moms to feel like family who understands, shares and love each other’s. We want parents to feel safe having or leaving their children in Kids Zone to play with other kids, celebrate special occasions, develop their creativity and expand their imagination. Life can get hard at times, we want parents to know that we will be right there for them and their children.
As the African Proverb says “it takes a village to raise a child”, our vision is for Kids Zone to be part of that village who offers a helping hand in this beautiful journey of parenthood.
–How long did it take until you decided that you will proceed and take an action?
As I mentioned, I was trying to find a place to turn to with my kids where kids can play as well as learn, attend different classes and if necessary have someone babysit or supervise my kids in a safe and stimulating public place while I get to have some time to do my chores, go to the saloon or have some me time. As mothers we are always cautious where and to who to trust our kids. Leaving kids at home with a nanny did not seem as a good option for me at that time. Soon after I realized there is no play area in Dubai that offers all this services in one place. After 3 years of searching for the perfect place I decided to open my own place “Kids Zone” and offer to parents services I wanted to have while raising my kids. It took me 3 years to take action and open Kids Zone.
-How do you juggle your personal life and family?
Kids Zone project started because of my family. When I presented my business plan to my husband he has offered me great support. And the fact that I wanted to be around my kids as well as go and work at the same time was my main drive. My kids were my inspiration and the fact that I can see many parents in the same position I was few years ago and complimenting as well as appreciating what Kids Zone has to offer inspires me to continue serving our customers in the best way we can as well as having my kids around to test all the services and products we offer is a bonus for me.
-What do you feel have been your biggest achievements both in your personal life and career so far?
I see myself as a mother first, being a mother is the greatest achievement of my life. From the beginning it has been a journey that constantly surprises me, educates me and confuse me at times. The emotional connection I feel towards my children brings boundless joy into my life. I feel incredibly blessed to be surrounded by these little human beings. Each moment of every day is filled with different energies, activities, feelings and a lot of comedy. From playing, cooking, school run or other activities each of my children fill my day with laughter, activities and discussion. In addition I have always been a great believer that women should support women, especially mothers, as they constantly put their own needs behind those of their children, embracing daily uncertainties and daily challenges of parenthood, to be, in return, rewarded with joy and endless love. Being in Kids Zone I see the spirit of mothers supporting mothers and it just makes all the difference being surrounded by all this beautiful souls during my stay in Kids Zone.
As far as my career is concerned, after graduating, working, volunteering, running Kids Zone, I still feel that my biggest achievement is yet to come. I’m always looking to achieve more tomorrow than I did today and I’m striving to improve myself all the time. One of the most influential management writers, Peter Drucker, wrote: “We now accept the fact that learning is a lifelong process of keeping abreast of change. And the most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.”
-As a child, what did you dream of being when you ‘grew up’?
I was a very strong willed child, I made friends easily and I would be the leader of my friends most of the times. I had many ideas on what games to play where to play and how to get the resources we need. Every time we played I was the teacher, the singer the main lead. I guess I wanted to be a leader from a very young age. As I grow a quote clang to me from Ashley Smith: “Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.” No matter what you dream of becoming when you are a child there is going to be a point in your life where you are going to be shaped into the person you are meant to become and you are going to recognize the potential within yourself that is waiting to be discovered. Take the opportunity and follow your dreams I would say.
-What was the last book you read and from how long?
The Latest book that I read was The Secret it is a best-selling 2006 self-help book written by Rhonda Byrne, based on the earlier film of the same name. It is based on the law of attraction and claims that positive thinking can create life-changing results such as increased happiness, health, and wealth. Currently I’m reading The Power it was published in 2010 and it is a sequel to the 2006 book The Secret. The books aim to share knowledge that is true, simple, and practical, and that will transform people’s lives.
–What do you like most?
I like being surrounded by happy people, appreciative people who see the beauty in each day. Seeing people achieve their true potential as well as seeing people happy and being able to make a difference in someone’s life.
-Give Kids Zone three words or describe it in three words what would it be?
Play, Learn, Party
-If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be?
My husband not long ago invited me to attend a talk about “Passion” along with him. The presenter was amazing and he said something that I remember very well. “The greatest things are born out of needs or hard times. When you go through an experience in your life and get an idea and you believe in it, it becomes your passion!”
Ourselves and our FEARS (specifically fear of failure!) are usually our biggest obstacles to success! Think of failure as just another step closer to success. Sometimes we need to take risks in life. Those who take risk will achieve their dreams one day even if they go through few bumps along the journey. There will always be people who will criticize you and discourage you who won’t believe in your dream, but this should be your fuel to even work harder and be more successful.
In conclusion, I would say to all the moms out there; if you have an idea and you believe in it, plan well and just do it!
Kids Zone WhatsApp: +971 50 460 4203