September 01, 2010 - Local Female Entrepreneur Competing for $50k “Pepsi Refresh” Grant to Open Unique Children’s Book, Toy, Wellness and Learning Hub

Cheeky Monkeys Books and Toys' is relying 100% on community votes to become one of 10 chosen to receive national grant

St. Petersburg, FL — It promises to be a full-scale creative learning, wellness and cultural hub for local children of all ages, offering free tutoring and a wide-variety of special events. The future “Cheeky Monkeys Books and Toys” will also offer loads of unique books and toys. There’s just one problem--For project visionary, female entrepreneur and mother, Olga Bof, banks aren’t lending and cash

isn’t exactly flowing; Therefore, the innovative working mother entered the “Pepsi Refresh Project” and is now relying solely on community votes to win a fifty thousand dollar “make or break” start-up grant.

Olga has already competed against literally hundreds of thousands of applicants for the grant and now in the September round of the “Pepsi Refresh Project,” Cheeky Monkeys has quickly soared into the “Top 200” of the competition’s “Neighborhoods” category—a big achievement. The grant would represent a third of what is actually needed to build and open the downtown St. Petersburg, Florida storefront.

Cheeky Monkeys Books and Toys’ sole mission will be to “partner with our local community to help raise readers while inspiring, stimulating and engaging young minds,” explains Olga. “To paint a picture of what it will be like,” Olga explains, “the store will be a colorful, fun and whimsical place full of books and magical toys. There will be little nooks for kids to sit or curl up in with a book. A special meeting space will house all kinds of classes.”

The Project's Goals:
• Instill a life-long love of reading in children
• Become a dedicated community partner and a "buy local" crusader
• Help local schools and libraries add to their own children’s book collections
• Receive training to adapt toys and books for children with special needs
• Become THE community resource for sharing information about children

How the 50K be used:
According to Olga, “the grant would only represent 1/3 of what is needed, but it would mean we would be 1/3 closer to making the dream a reality!”
• $ 25,000 New books and toys for opening inventory 
• $ 15,000 Construction costs for the build-out of a unique space 
• $ 7,500 Bookshelves and soft-seating for children & adults 
• $ 2,500 Community meeting room equipment (including furniture & an audio-visual kit)

“Win or lose, it feels wonderful to witness this community coming together to win this grant and build this very special children’s destination. Winning this grant means more childrens’ lives will be enhanced in a very positive way. That means everything to me,” says Olga.

MEDIA OPPORTUNITIES: Olga Bof is available for interview. Please contact Olga directly at (813) 500-7708 or[email protected].

For more information about the project and mission, please visit the store’s Facebook page at Throughout the month of September, people wanting to help should cast their FREE daily votes by TEXTING “101443” TO 73774 or by For Cheeky Monkeys to become a reality, daily voting is a must. 

About Cheeky Monkeys Books: A first-of-its-kind children's book, toy, learning and cultural center and store for the Tampa Bay, Florida Area, Cheeky Monkeys Books & Toys will aim to be a true “Destination of Discovery” and a top community resource for sharing information about children and supporting activities that enhance reading, play and family life for children ranging from babies to young adults. The store’s ongoing packed calendar of events will feature author readings, signings, art and music classes, healthy mind and body activities, local teacher days, summer camps and much more. The store will work to help local schools fill their library book shelves and will offer FREE in-store tutoring. The Cheeky Monkeys website will offer over three million book and e-book titles in a number of languages, along with a toy selection focusing on eco-friendly, educational, old-fashioned, special needs, hand-made varieties, locally and woman-made products and with a strong emphasis on design. Cheeky Monkeys will regularly provide time and resources to local charities. For more information, please visit and visit to view founder Olga Bof’s passionate “Pepsi Refresh’’ video submission. 

About Pepsi Refresh: Pepsi is giving away millions each month to fund refreshing ideas that change the world. The ideas with the most votes will receive grants. According to the Pepsi Refresh website, Pepsi Refresh is “looking for people, businesses, and non-profits with ideas that will have a positive impact.” They are asking Americans to “ Look around your community and think about how you want to change it.”