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This Monday, 29 September, we visited Ak’Tenamit’s education center in the eastern department known as Izabal, Guatemala. The education center is participating in the School Enterprise Challenge with its new Eco-lodge business. Graciela Coy and Lucio Perez showed and explained to us the four bungalows which will form part of Ak’Tenamit’s tourism center.

Ak'Tenamit Bungalows

This incredible project completed the first and second stage of the School Enterprise Challenge: Plan of Ideas and Business Plan. Now, they are in the third stage: Implementing the Business Plan.

 

Our hosts commented the principle objective of the business is to create a new hands-on experience for their students specializing in Sustainable Tourism or Rural Wellbeing (this includes agricultural and some aspects of environmental science). The purpose of this is to preserve and improve the rainforest in which it is located as well as use its environment as a resource for learning eco-sustainability. They also commented the strengths of their business: its location being in the heart of Rio Dulce’s National Park and less than half an hour away from the town of Livingston. These two areas attract a large amount of tourists, giving Ak’Tenamit the opportunity to advertise its other businesses: school restaurant and authentic handmade craft store.

IMG_4642

The Ak’Tenamit Association is an indigenous community development organization with the objective to promote self-sustainability and quality living in the lives of Mayan and other ethnic groups. One of the ways they do this is through their education program; Moran Education Center.

 

We are very excited to have Ak’Tenamit participating in the competition. Besides the other businesses in developing stages, the Eco-lodge is the newest business which has received much motivation and enthusiasm from staff and students in charge of implementing this project. With still some final touches, this business will soon be ready for advertising.

IMG_4634

 

 

 

 

 

Good luck Ak’Tenamit en the third stage of Implementation!!

Publicado por & archivado en SEC Blog.

This Monday, 29 September, we visited Ak’Tenamit’s education center in the eastern department known as Izabal, Guatemala. The education center is participating in the School Enterprise Challenge with its new Eco-lodge business. Graciela Coy and Lucio Perez showed and explained to us the four bungalows which will form part of Ak’Tenamit’s tourism center.

Ak'Tenamit Bungalows

This incredible project completed the first and second stage of the School Enterprise Challenge: Plan of Ideas and Business Plan. Now, they are in the third stage: Implementing the Business Plan.

 

Our hosts commented the principle objective of the business is to create a new hands-on experience for their students specializing in Sustainable Tourism or Rural Wellbeing (this includes agricultural and some aspects of environmental science). The purpose of this is to preserve and improve the rainforest in which it is located as well as use its environment as a resource for learning eco-sustainability. They also commented the strengths of their business: its location being in the heart of Rio Dulce’s National Park and less than half an hour away from the town of Livingston. These two areas attract a large amount of tourists, giving Ak’Tenamit the opportunity to advertise its other businesses: school restaurant and authentic handmade craft store.

IMG_4642

The Ak’Tenamit Association is an indigenous community development organization with the objective to promote self-sustainability and quality living in the lives of Mayan and other ethnic groups. One of the ways they do this is through their education program; Moran Education Center.

 

We are very excited to have Ak’Tenamit participating in the competition. Besides the other businesses in developing stages, the Eco-lodge is the newest business which has received much motivation and enthusiasm from staff and students in charge of implementing this project. With still some final touches, this business will soon be ready for advertising.

IMG_4634

 

 

 

 

 

Good luck Ak’Tenamit en the third stage of Implementation!!

Publicado por & archivado en SEC Blog.

In this week’s blog we are talking about our exciting mentoring programme! All schools in the Schools Enterprise Challenge who have submitted a business idea are eligible to apply, so read on to find out more!

What is the School Enterprise Challenge mentoring programme?

Mentoring is when someone experienced shares their knowledge to someone else to help them succeed. Teach a Man to Fish has recruited a lovely group of mentors who have got enterprise knowledge and experience to help schools in the competition with their businesses. Through email communication, schools will be able to ask their mentors questions about their businesses, or any problems they are facing with the competition, and the mentor will be able to provide suggestions for how to overcome these.  It is a fantastic opportunity to help your business be the best it can be!

What are the benefits?

Having a mentor will mean you can ask for help with problems like “How do I create start up funds?” or “How can I market my business to the rest of the community?” or “How can I make it more profitable?”

They will be there to support you until the end of the competition, so when times are difficult, you have someone you can ask for help. And, most importantly, someone to share the joy with when you succeed!

An example from last year’s competition:

Last year, St.Vincent school in Zambia had a mentor to help them with their tuck shop enterprise . Their mentor gave them the idea to use the tuck shop to sell other products which they already produced, such as vegetables, eggs, and recycled bags, to generate extra income. The mentor also suggested that they run an opening event for the shop, to generate excitement and publicity for the new business. Another thing they highlighted was that loyalty cards might be a good way to keep existing costumers and result in even more sales. The mentor’s suggestions resulted in St.Vincent school running a very profitable business, and they have entered the competition with their exciting business development plans in this year’s competition!

vincent

How to apply:

Think you would like to benefit from some similar support? Here’s how to apply!

Visit: http://www.schoolenterprisechallenge.org/myhome/ and click on the “apply for a mentor” button. Then fill out the application form, and click “submit”. When we receive your application, we’ll look carefully at your business plan and why you have requested a mentor, to match you with someone with the skills and experiences which will be of most benefit to your school.

Remember! The deadline to submit your business plan is September 15th!

If you haven’t already submitted your business plan, you can still apply for a mentor, but priority will be given to the schools who have already submitted their business plans. There are only a limited numbers of mentors available, so try to include detail in your application to help us match you.

Publicado por & archivado en SEC Blog.

In this week’s blog we are talking about our exciting mentoring programme! All schools in the Schools Enterprise Challenge who have submitted a business idea are eligible to apply, so read on to find out more!

What is the School Enterprise Challenge mentoring programme?

Mentoring is when someone experienced shares their knowledge to someone else to help them succeed. Teach a Man to Fish has recruited a lovely group of mentors who have got enterprise knowledge and experience to help schools in the competition with their businesses. Through email communication, schools will be able to ask their mentors questions about their businesses, or any problems they are facing with the competition, and the mentor will be able to provide suggestions for how to overcome these.  It is a fantastic opportunity to help your business be the best it can be!

What are the benefits?

Having a mentor will mean you can ask for help with problems like “How do I create start up funds?” or “How can I market my business to the rest of the community?” or “How can I make it more profitable?”

They will be there to support you until the end of the competition, so when times are difficult, you have someone you can ask for help. And, most importantly, someone to share the joy with when you succeed!

An example from last year’s competition:

Last year, St.Vincent school in Zambia had a mentor to help them with their tuck shop enterprise . Their mentor gave them the idea to use the tuck shop to sell other products which they already produced, such as vegetables, eggs, and recycled bags, to generate extra income. The mentor also suggested that they run an opening event for the shop, to generate excitement and publicity for the new business. Another thing they highlighted was that loyalty cards might be a good way to keep existing costumers and result in even more sales. The mentor’s suggestions resulted in St.Vincent school running a very profitable business, and they have entered the competition with their exciting business development plans in this year’s competition!

vincent

How to apply:

Think you would like to benefit from some similar support? Here’s how to apply!

Visit: http://www.schoolenterprisechallenge.org/myhome/ and click on the “apply for a mentor” button. Then fill out the application form, and click “submit”. When we receive your application, we’ll look carefully at your business plan and why you have requested a mentor, to match you with someone with the skills and experiences which will be of most benefit to your school.

Remember! The deadline to submit your business plan is September 15th!

If you haven’t already submitted your business plan, you can still apply for a mentor, but priority will be given to the schools who have already submitted their business plans. There are only a limited numbers of mentors available, so try to include detail in your application to help us match you.

Publicado por & archivado en SEC Blog.

Hello from The School Enterprise Challenge Team!
Shivangi and Tanya from St Mark's Secondary School in New Delhi, India

Shivangi and Tanya from St Mark’s Secondary School in New Delhi, India


Since many of you are working on your business idea submissions, we thought it would be nice to hear from some previous students about their experience! Our friends Shivangi and Tanya from St Mark’s Secondary School, Meera Bagh, in New Delhi, India, very kindly agreed to speak to us. Shivangi and Tanya’s team started a school business ‘Nirmaan Enterprise’ selling cloth bags in 2012, and the business has run successfully ever since.

How did you come to decide on running this particular business? 

Well, we considered running other businesses including selling paper bags, pickles and spices, or jute bags, but there were drawbacks to these ideas. The cost of production was often too high, or the competition was intense, or in the case of a pickle-and-spice business, there were hygiene issues and concerns about how to store the pickles and spice. In the end, our business selling cloth bags was the best option because there was negligible cost and it fulfilled the People, Planet and Profit requirements of sustainable and environmentally responsible businesses.


What was your biggest challenge in running the business?
The ladies employed by Nirmaan Enterprise.

The ladies employed by Nirmaan Enterprise.


We wanted our business to have a positive impact on the local community by employing women who were living below the poverty line. After finding these ladies, our biggest challenge was convincing them that our business was going to make a profit and that their efforts wouldn’t be wasted if they joined our enterprise. Also, we had to convince the customers that it was worth buying our bags. Customers tended to have a lot of questions so we had to be prepared to answer them.

 

What was the most important thing you learnt?

Definitely leadership skills, especially in managing our team and dividing up tasks. We have 12-15 students in our team, and 7-8 women working for us. Each woman was assigned one student as a personal contact. We also organised ourselves such that we had five departments on our team: the creative department, marketing department, accounts department, admin department, and resource development department.

 What advice would you give to other students wanting to start a business?

Be well-organised and take things step-by-step. In our first year when we started this business, we were not looking to make profit, it was more about establishing a business, having a healthy division of labour, and establishing a working relationship with the women who made our bags. In the first year 80% of the profits went to the women; in the second and third year, 50% of the business profits went to them. The profit we kept was to reinvest in the business.
Shivangi and Tanya with their business team and a selection of their bags.

Shivangi and Tanya with their business team and a selection of their bags.


What was fun about running the business? 

Engaging with the customers and convincing them to buy our bags. We had to approach each customer and challenge their consumer habits. This was challenging but also the most interesting.


What are you most proud of in this experience?

We are proud of being able to set up the business. Three years ago we were the first generation of students in our school to set up such a business, and now we get to share our experience and mentor next year’s team. We’re also proud of helping the earth and people in our local community. 

 

And there you have it! Now that you’ve heard what it’s like to run a business, it’s time to experience it for yourself! We hope Shivangi and Tanya have given you some inspiration, hope, and useful advice. There are many things to look forward to in setting up and running a business; it’s time to figure out what you will find most interesting, challenging and rewarding!

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PPPThe School Enterprise Challenge supports socially and environmentally responsible businesses; not only are these businesses more considerate of our communities, but they are also more sustainable in the longer term. To ensure that your school business has a positive impact socially and environmentally, try checking yourself against the 3 P’s of responsible entrepreneurship: People, Planet and Profit.

Previous schools have come up with business ideas that tackle the 3 P’s head on. Check out the case studies below!

Bookbinding

Bookbinding factory idea as submitted by Govt Higher Secondary School No 1 Haripur, Pakistan.

The Govt Higher Secondary School No 1 Haripur, Pakistan, used the shop and workshops already available at their school to come up with a bookbinding factory. They established the number of students who were well trained in bookbinding, and who would then teach other students to do the same. The finished product would be a resource for the poor and the parentless. Via small-scale marketing and engaging other schools with their idea, the students would also get a chance to be more involved in their community.

Another example is the school bakery idea by the Career Development Training Institute, Lesotho. By making use of the bakery and catering courses already offered at the institute, they intended not only to reduce costs, but also to hire local vulnerable women and children, involving them in the business process. They also planned to use materials that posed minimal environmental harm, and support established businesses that are ecologically friendly.

USA Jewellery

Jewellery idea samples from Birmingham Covington School.

The Birmingham Covington School in Michigan, United States, decided on making jewellery from used gift cards that would otherwise end up in a landfill. Since most of their material was recycled, the start-up costs were low, which meant that there was a higher margin for profit. Doing so, they believed, also encouraged local business owners and students from other schools to be more aware of sustainability concerns and their responsibility as consumers.

So you see, there are ideas abound! Trust that you can be creative, and that this process will be rewarding for you – our previous participants have confirmed it so! You can also brainstorm with other schools by logging onto the Members’ area of the School Enterprise Challenge website.

What brilliant ideas has your school brainstormed that meet our PPP criteria? 

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IdeaNow that you have registered for the School Enterprise Challenge, you are ready to start Stage 1 of the competition! In Stage 1 you have 4 weeks to come up with a business idea for your school based enterprise and we are here to help you along the way! Every week you will receive a weekly competition guide which will walk you through our Business Idea Template. At the end of 4 weeks, you will be ready to submit your completed template and fantastic business idea to us!

Lets have a look at what you need to do in Stage 1….

1)    Get excited!

Take a few minutes to consider what the words ‘school enterprise’ mean to you. What are the benefits of participating in the School Enterprise competition? What skills would you like to gain from the experience?

2)    Conduct a resource assessment and brainstorm ideas

Brainstorming session at Kulachi Hansraj Model School, India.

Students at Kulachi Hansraj Model School, India, discuss their resources and initial business ideas.

This step considers the kind of resources your school has available and how they can be maximized for profit. Set aside 10 minutes to identify the kinds of natural or physical resources you have (is it water? land? an unused classroom?). This step is important so that start-up costs are kept as low as possible. You can then use your completed resource assessment to start brainstorming business ideas!

3)    Conduct a feasibility study

A feasibility study is simply a formal consideration of whether your business idea is realistic given your time, energy and resources. Questions you will have to ask are: Is the product easy to store and transport? If it’s a service, who would be involved in providing it? This step will determine which one of your business is more likely to succeed.

4)    Consider your start-up capital

Start-up capital is basically the minimum amount of money required to start your business. If your business requires materials or services that are not freely available and that you will need to pay for, then you have a start-up cost to meet before running your business. Meeting these costs can be done by holding fundraising events, requesting donations or investments, or selling other resources that are already available in your school.

After completing steps 1-4, you simply need to submit your Business Idea to our team. We read EVERY business idea we receive and then we’ll move you on to Stage 2 where you will learn how to write a Business and Financial Plan!

So, there you have it! Stage 1 explained. Easy, right?! Get started NOW and share your experience with us by commenting below. We love hearing from you!

 

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Welcome to this year’s School Enterprise Challenge! After many months of hard work and organisation, the team at Teach A Man To Fish officially launched the competition on 8th May, 2014. And there is much to look forward to!

The Birches JPGThank you so much for your feedback in the School Enterprise Challenge survey that went out in February. We have now taken into consideration some of the changes you’d like to see, and have subsequently implemented them.

There is now a ‘rolling’ deadline for each school relative to the date of registration. This ‘rolling’ deadline means that all schools who register before 23rd June will receive the same amount of time and weekly guides. Now nobody will be disadvantaged because their term started late or ended early!

Another major change to the competition is the opportunity to have a school ‘profile page’ on the new School Enterprise Challenge website. You get to introduce yourself, contact other schools and participate in forums. All direct contact information remains confidential so that you can engage freely and securely with other schools, exchange ideas, brainstorm new projects, and just generally get to know each other! It’s a bit like Facebook, but for schools around the world.

Further, there are new prizes to be won for primary schools, as many of you requested. Students from the ages of 5 to 12 will now have a selection of fresh and exciting prizes to vie for! Information packs are also a lot shorter, and our business templates more user-friendly. Entering the competition has never been easier!

More New Stuff in 2014:

 *        More cash prizes!

*        More educational resources!

*        More opportunities for business mentors AND school partnerships!

*        More exciting mini competitions!

*        A certificate of recognition for every school that enters!

*        AND a brand new website!

This year’s competition will be in three stages, with prizes at every stage. At the first stage, you submit a business idea, and if you wish to, you can partner with other schools and apply for business mentors. At the second stage, you submit a business and financial plan, with the help of our step-by-step guide and business templates. Lastly, you submit a final report covering the launch and running of your business enterprise.

How simple is that? 

For more about School Enterprise Challenge 2014, please click here.

Of course, what you loved best about the Challenge will remain the same. The competition is still free to enter, and still includes school from all over the world. We love that you get to acquire practical skill while getting to know schools from other cultures, and this year’s competition is designed to help you do exactly that in an easier and friendlier way.

Which means that it’s time to register your school for an opportunity to win up to $5,000 and gain real-life business experience!

Some of Our Winners from 2013 

The New Horizon International School in Cameroon was a Planet Winner for their innovative processing of cassava, a major source of carbohydrate in the local diet, into water fufu and garri. They not only addressed the scarcity of cassava and grinder machines, but also appealed to ecological concerns by reusing cassava peelings as compost for the next planting season.

Our Non-Commonwealth Winner at the second stage was Shanghai Pinghe Bilingual School from China, whose business included selling recycled canvas bags and handmade leaf bookmarks. They are contributing a portion of their profits to a charity that supports disadvantaged communities.

For a full list of our past winners, please click here.

So what are you waiting for? Sign up for the School Enterprise Challenge now and have your share of this fantastic opportunity!

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Hi Everyone!

Staff membe, Lily, enjoying your business plans!

Staff member, Lily, enjoying your business plans!

It’s been a while since we wrote a blog post! We have not forgotten you! 🙂 We have been busy during the last few months reading and     marking your Final Reports and we have been so impressed by your achievements!  An international panel formed of a number of high profile business experts and entrepreneurs have also been involved in judging and choosing the winners of the 2013 School Enterprise Challenge.

 

We have had so much positive feedback from our judges, that we wanted to speak with one of them in more detail and share her thoughts with all of you!

Young Global Leader, Soulaima Gourani

Meet Soulaima Gourani – one of our 2013 School Enterprise Challenge Judges!

Soulaima is an internationally known speaker, business adviser, author and innovator.  She was selected as a ‘Young Global Leader’ by the World Economic Forum in 2012, and is one of the 2014 40 under 40′ European Young Leaders, selected by EuropaNova and Friends of Europe.

Here is what she had to say about the School Enterprise Challenge and our participants!

Interview with Soulaima…..

What do you like about The School Enterprise Challenge competition?

14140 - School Enterprise logo option 4“I like that The School Enterprise Challenge combines schools with entrepreneurship.  This is very important, to do something in the school for the school which also benefits the environment and the community.  I like that schools need to write a business plan and to prove that they can run a business, focusing on profit and loss.

I was surprised at how advanced the plans were, it is not just something you can do in an afternoon, you need to document as well as start and run a business.  The competition combines all the skills needed to run an enterprise.  I was really really impressed with the projects I read.”

Why did you agree to be a judge?

“Because my heart is in entrepreneurship, it is so important to create a generation that not only thinks about what job they can do, but also what job they can create.  The older people get, the more risk adverse they become, so it is important to start early.  Some of the students that participate are really young and I really like this.”

What were you most impressed by when reading the reports?

Foredragsholder, virksomhedsrådgiver og forfatter Soulaima Gourani.“I think that all of the reports were very well written, there were many great observations and considerations, and you could feel the human touch while reading them.  I was also impressed with so many people talking about how they had developed leadership and teamwork. In one business plan it said “we have to change our employees so that we can innovate”… I was so impressed with these young people that realised that they needed to be dynamic and not static!  These young people were 11 and their concern was how to stay innovative.  I was surprised and impressed.”

Was there a school business idea / report that you particularly liked and why?

“I liked all of the reports!!!!! It was hard to mark as they were all so good! The differences between them were marginal. Overall I was very impressed. What I really liked was that everyone was concerned with the environment. I was impressed with the efforts of some businesses on how to scale and create an impact on a wider scale.”

What advice would you give to the participants for this year’s competition?

“First I would tell all of you to believe in what you are doing.  You need to come up with a great idea that can be sold, something that you are really passionate about because you will spend a lot of time on it, so it needs to be something that you really like. Next, think in terms of how you can SCALE THIS!  Find mentors, go out and find people who can help you.  Parents can be great mentors, so get them involved! And finally, businesses have to be profitable, even if you have a good idea, if you do not make money it will not be successful.”

Any general advice you’d give young people who are passionate about social entrepreneurship?

Students at The Birches pre-primary, South Africa, proving you are never too young to start a business!

“Most things in the world were started by a single person with a great idea; even a young person can change the world!!! I see this in many places in life – you need to believe that even if you are a young person you can make a difference.  One can never be too young to change the world!”

Inspirational stuff! We’d like to thank Soulaima and all of our judges for their involvement in The School Enterprise Challenge 2013 and ofcourse to all of YOU, our talented young entrepreneurs! The winners of 2013 will be announced shortly. Please keep checking your emails and our website to see if your school has won a cash prize and well done to everyone that participated!

The School Enterprise Challenge Team

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Now that you have thought of a great idea for a school enterprise, written your business plan and implemented your business, it is time for you to reflect back on all the hard work you have put in.  So, this week we are looking at Pack 5, Part 2: Launch, Grow, Report, which is all about learning how to write and submit your Final Report.

3_Clipart_writing

The final report should tell us what you have achieved, the challenges you faced and how you overcame them. It is a bit like completing your business plan ‘backwards!’ In the business plan you told us what you were going to do as part of the School Enterprise Challenge, now we now want you to tell us what you have done! 

A good final report says what the OUTCOMES of participating in the School Enterprise Challenge were. You should think about who benefited, how they benefited and what skills they gained.

Students at SAI international school have learnt valuable business and marketing skills. The market vendors have also benefitted from their enterprise.

Students at SAI international school have learnt valuable business and marketing skills. The local market vendors have also benefited from their enterprise.

It is also really important to think about how you have made your business sustainable and how you plan to develop it further. As you write the final report you will look back over everything that you have done and so it is a great way of identifying what you might do differently in the future.

Your final report should also tell us how much income you generated.  In your Profit & Loss Statement, you will need to provide information on:

profit-and-loss-asset-banking-icon-66240445
  • What you spent money on to start your business – Start Up Costs
  •  How much money your business makes from selling your product/service – Income
  • What you spent money on while running your business – Direct and Indirect Costs                 

Top tips for writing your final report

blog.easygym.co.uk

blog.easygym.co.uk

  1. Make sure you use our Final Report template.You can download an editable copy from the Resources section of our website here: http://www.schoolenterprisechallenge.org/lresources#Final%20Report%20Template
  2. Read Pack 5, Part 2: Launch, Grow, Report for extra guidance and examples: http://www.schoolenterprisechallenge.org/files/SEC_Pack_5_Part_2_Report.pdf
  3. Be clear and succinct – Remember to answer the questions that are being asked.
  4. Be completely honest! – Don’t just write about your successes, tell us about the challenges you faced and how you dealt with them.
  5. Complete ALL sections fully- There are TWO parts to the final report and it is really important to answer both of them!

And, remember your final report could win your school up to USD $5,000, so it’s really important to complete it well! Only schools that have submitted their final report can enter the Inspirational Teacher and Enterprising Student competitions. Don’t miss out an opportunity to win more great prizes!

cup_award

So what are you waiting for?! Please submit your reports to us by 20th December 2013 to: submissions@schoolenterprisechallenge.org. We can’t wait to read them!

School Enterprise Challenge Blogger,

Esther