Joey Antonacci is a 16-year-old Fayettville-Manlius High School student. He is involved in clubs and the varsity swim team, and runs his own business.
“Being alone to enjoy your own company is better than being surrounded by fake people,” read Antonacci.
He calls his side businesses "Jars of Joy." The high school junior fills jars with candy and inspirational quotes to help make someone's day.
“I care about people so much. When I see people down or upset, it makes me want to help and find a way to stop that so people aren’t depressed,” said Antonacci.
He says he got the idea visiting his mom in her office. She had jars with candy on her desk and gave them to Joey when she didn’t need them anymore.
Now Joey rarely has free time. If he’s not filling up jars, he’s taking orders from customers or working on his website. It can be a lot of work, so his friends help out.
“I’ve never met a friend my age group who is interested in helping mental awareness or people who want to let them know that you feel love with beautiful quotes,” said Jars of Joy Co-Manager Galia Amor. “To me, words are meaningful to people. It’s more powerful sometimes than actions.”
Galia helps laminate the jars and had the idea of adding candles to the business. When the candles are done burning, there is a quote at the bottom of the jar.
“We get these quotes and we write them down right away. We think if this affected us, we know it can affect other people,” said Amor.
Joey says he’s sold hundreds of jars. He says he doesn’t get paid and puts the profits toward helping others, hoping to make a difference one jar at a time.
For every five jars it sells, Jars of Joy donates one jar to a local charity. Donations are also accepted for jars to go to a non-profit organization.