Colegios Peruanos Innova Schools Arequipa 1, Perú (2016 Top Global Winner, Stage 3 – Business Implementation)
Students at Colegios Peruanos Innova Schools Arequipa 1 are the proud founders of the innovative school business ‘Banco del Estudiante Bartselana’. At its core, their school business is actually an educational tool aimed at improving the financial, social and environmental understanding of young people in Peru, but it’s the way in which it is carried out that is the most interesting.
A banking cooperative set up by students under the slogan of ‘banking for young people, by young people’, they are encouraging their peers to better understand the value of money and the importance of saving. Young people are invited to join and pay their cooperative membership fee by bringing in waste. This waste is then sold on to recycling authorities and the income is used to organise talks and seminars at other schools and institutions across Peru. These events are organised and led by the students at Colegios Peruanos Innova Schools Arequipa 1 and are completely free to attend. As they explain: “There is no cost. This allows us to break down the inequality barriers when it comes to financial education.” Their surplus profit is then spent on supporting local young people living with cancer.
Indeed, the students at Colegios Peruanos Innova Schools Arequipa 1 believe that age and background should not be an obstacle to receiving adequate financial education and that more young people should venture into entrepreneurialism. Their impact has been widespread, with the students giving talks at their own school and schools throughout their region as well as attending numerous conferences and congresses across the country. They’ve even received international recognition, being named as finalists of the Global Financial Education and Inclusion Prize!
Choithram School, India (2016 People Award Winner, Stage 3 – Business Implementation)
Through their ongoing involvement in the School Enterprise Challenge, students at Choithram School in Indore, India, have established and grown a successful handicrafts business called Good Earth. Their eco-friendly products, which include jewellery, jute bags and cloth bags, are all handmade from recycled material. In 2016, the business team of 25 students focused on growing their target market by selling their products not only at fundraising events and Parent Teacher Meetings but also festivals and local exhibitions. In just 4 months they generated a net profit of USD $835!
The students worked brilliantly together, making collective decisions and supporting each other throughout the whole process. In their Final Report, the business team described how they improved their communication and leadership skills, as Youtee Kher of grade 12 explains: “I never realized that I could convince customers to such an extent.” In fact, her experience in the School Enterprise Challenge has inspired her to think about studying Business at university!
As well as being very profitable and a fantastic learning experience for students, Good Earth has also had a considerable social impact. Over half of the profits generated in 2016 have been re-invested in good causes including supporting their local orphanage, helping disabled students at their school and donating solar lamps to a nearby village.
“It is encouraging to see the students take initiative in setting up their business enterprise and getting empowered with 21st century skills.” – Teacher (Raminder Mac, Dean – International Affairs)
Unidad Educativa Particular Politécnico, Ecuador (2016 Profit Award Winner, Stage 3 – Business Implementation)
Noticing that many students were not having a proper breakfast before school, students at Unidad Educativa Particular Politécnico in Ecuador decided to set up their school business ‘Chocolino’ in 2015. Determined to encourage a healthier diet, they sell a variety of high-energy breakfast foods that give students and teachers the ‘fuel’ needed for a successful day at school.
In 2016 the students took their venture to new heights, diversifying their menu and introducing a new price structure with an exciting VIP package now on offer. As well as improving the financial side of their business, they have re-visited the structure of their team. In order to best meet the needs of their customers, they now operate in multiple smaller-sized teams. These innovative improvements have had a wonderful effect on their income with the business generating a net profit of USD $1,442 in just 4 months. This money is in turn having a big social impact as it is being used to train disadvantaged women in the area on how to set up their own businesses.
Biblioteca de la Creatividad, Colombia (2016 Planet Award Winner, Stage 3 – Business Implementation)
Determined to fight the effects of deforestation in their local area, students at Biblioteca de la Creatividad decided to set up their school business ‘Mi Papel’. After watching various Youtube videos by the environmental group TheFunTheory.com, these School Enterprise Challenge participants decided they wanted to change people’s attitudes towards recycling.
Focusing on the disposal of waste paper, they began by building recycling ‘box points’ from salvaged wood. These boxes were then placed in nearby schools, colleges and businesses and income was generated from selling the collected paper to local recycling authorities. These bright young students demonstrated fantastic communication skills, successfully reaching out to their customers by email, telephone and also social media!
The USD $960 net profit generated from the sales of recycled paper was spent on planting over 300 trees in the local area: “I love this project because it aims to protect forests in our community and I’ve had the chance to learn how to plant trees. Now, I always recycle paper because I understand its environmental impact and I can play a role in reducing it,” Francy Correa, 14 (member of the Mi Papel school business team).
Conalep Aguascalientes IV, Mexico (2016 Top Global Winner, Stage 2 – Business Plan)
Nearly 100 students at Conalep IV Aguascalientes in Mexico were involved in planning the successful school business ‘Construye más, vende más’. After writing their business plan, which includes in-depth market research with over 50 potential clients, they showed great determination to launch and run the successful food and drink business. During the week, they sold their refreshing fruit drinks and snacks on their school grounds and in the nearby area. At the weekends, members of the business team took stock home and sold it in their own neighborhoods. This clever distribution technique allowed them to reach a much wider audience and earn a net profit of over USD $2,000 in just 3 months! Part of these remarkable profits will be reinvested into the school business and the rest will be used for good causes such as installing drinking fountains around the school and providing free meals to students coming from lower income families.
Refusing to rest on their laurels, members of the business team have also gone on to create a series of YouTube videos outlining the concepts they applied and steps they took during the business planning and implementation phases. These videos have the aim of ensuring continuity between business teams and safeguarding the sustainability of the school business. They also hope that students and teachers at other schools will take these as inspiration to go and set up their very own school business!
Mount Abu Public School & Spring Days Model School, India (2016 Best Buddy Initiative)
Mount Abu Public School had already participated in the School Enterprise Challenge for a couple of years before deciding to take part in the Buddy Initiative and act as mentors for Spring Days Model School. Communicating through WhatsApp and organising regular meet-ups, they shared ideas, challenged each other and formed what proved to be an extremely fruitful relationship.
Indeed, for the young students at Mount Abu Public School this was a fantastic introduction to the School Enterprise Challenge and for Mount Abu it was an opportunity to add a new dimension to their learning. More experienced students took great pride in sharing their knowledge and becoming leaders in the process. A true testimony of how
successful this relationship was that both schools went on to submit fantastic Final Reports and generated a net profit of USD $869 between them!
“The students motivated and guided our team with so much dedication and zeal that it was very heartwarming. We could see the happy faces of the experienced team while they guided us and we learnt that sharing can be so satisfying. We learnt to be good listeners and better doers. The experience of teaming up with another institution and gelling with new ideas made us insightful of our own strengths like being able to adapt easily to new situations while facing challenges.” – Teacher (Spring Days Model School)