Jumpstart for Young Entrepreneurs

Jumpstart for Young Entrepreneurs

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Some 140 KwaZulu-Natal Grade 11 learners who successfully demonstrate a passion for entrepreneurship are to benefit from a new business kick-start.

An entrepreneurial programme, involving 14 schools in the province and sponsored by the Gift of the Givers Foundation, is set to introduce young, local entrepreneurs to KwaZulu-Natal’s business environment.

The all-new Jumpstart package contains branding tools designed to assist young entrants or aspirant entrants to business to overcome marketability barriers, so allowing them to get ahead of the game within an increasingly competitive business environment. The package will assist learners understand the need for a business corporate identity and how this may be translated into various business communication tools, such as websites and e-brochures, which will make a new business enterprise marketable. It also ensures that the selected learners are able to in future develop healthy communication networks with clients and customers using social media. The Jumpstart package was developed by Durban advertising and marketing communications agency, Assegai & Javelin, for the Gift of the Givers Foundation.

Vital for future growth

Commenting on the inaugural Gift of the Givers Schools’ Entrepreneurial Programme, Dr Imtiaz Sooliman, chairman and founder of the Gift of the Givers Foundation, said: “It is vital for future economic growth in South Africa that we instill an entrepreneurial culture in our country. Today’s high school learners and school-leavers are potentially tomorrow’s business owners. We must use every means possible to inspire learners to utilise their education to follow the path of business ownership, entrenching a new culture of entrepreneurship here, embracing the activities and ideas of the youth. Through this programme, learners are motivated to see their education not only as a ticket to employment but, when coupled with their own innovative ideas, as a key to their own successful businesses.”

“There can be no doubt that the best way to ensure South Africa’s sustained economic growth and development is through the active stimulation of entrepreneurship,” he stressed.

Starting small

This new entrepreneurship programme initially involves 14 participating schools in the Greater Durban area and, dependant on its success, could be expanded going forward. The programme is aimed specifically at Grade 11 learners and will see 140 youngsters, identified through a stringent selection process, being awarded ‘Jumpstart’ packages.

Commenting on the Gift of the Givers Foundation’s involvement in promoting entrepreneurship amongst the youth, Dr Sooliman said: “Many of our young people have wonderful business and product ideas and a natural flair for business, but will ultimately shy away from entrepreneurship because of cost considerations. We need to use technology to provide the apparatus for youngsters who truly believe in themselves and want to make a difference to ensure that they may indeed enjoy the opportunity of establishing sustainable, marketable enterprises and to give flight to their business ideas, so connecting with the world. We firmly believe that entrepreneurship is vital for the effective and wide-spread socio-economic upliftment of people and are, therefore, committed to providing a package which could greatly assist youngsters create new business ventures for the future.”

The programme is set to not only provide young would-be entrepreneurs with the tools necessary to creating a brand and making a new business marketable, but will also provide a myriad of avenues for access into the market-place domestically and even internationally. The schools programme marks the Gift of the Givers Foundation’s commitment to the active promotion of entrepreneurship, bringing direct benefits to learners eager to start their own businesses in South Africa.

It is envisaged that the Gift of the Givers Schools’ Entrepreneurial Programme will assist in producing a new breed of entrepreneur; individuals capable of harnessing the power of technology and using it to their business advantage.

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