The, Young Entrepreneurs Academy is being launched by Paula Basnett, Sandra Kirkham and Jonathan Quinn, with the new venture offering free help and support to the next generation of entrepreneurs throughout Wirral.
Sandra Kirkham, is a successful training and education entrepreneur and is teaming up with the chief executive of Wirral Chamber of Commerce, Paula Basnett, and Jonathan Quinn, the MD at Wirral-based innovation specialist, Quinnovations.
The scheme is aimed at would-be entrepreneurs between the ages of 18 to 24, with the academy offering practical help, information, advice and guidance in crucial areas such as finance, including tax and VAT, marketing, new tech, company law, and recruitment. The entrepreneurs will then be matched up with experienced businesspersons who may also look to invest in their businesses in the future.
To jump-start the pilot scheme, young people from Wirral who have business ideas or proposals are being asked to film a brief video about themselves and their plans in advance of discussions with a panel of local business people.
Sandra said: “Parts of Wirral, Birkenhead in particular, have a disproportionate number of disadvantaged young people who have always faced barriers to employment. The jobs situation is bad and sadly could get worse. The talent, skills and new ideas are out there – all it needs is to be noticed and for those who want to carve a career for themselves by running their own business to have the right people behind them to turn a dream into reality. It’s a case of capturing the vision then, with guidance, putting it into place.”
The economic crisis in the UK is reported to be forcing an additional 600,000 young people into unemployment this year, causing long-term and possible irreparable, damage to their pay and future job possibilities. Schemes such as the, Young Entrepreneurs Academy could make a real difference.
Jonathan added: “I was pretty much like them when I started my business journey – I had the ideas but hadn’t a clue about business ethics or putting something like a business plan together. I would have benefited immensely from this type of support and this is where we can succeed with our disadvantaged young people to help make them self-sufficient so that, once they become established, they can begin to employ others and start to turn the wheels of the local economy.”
Paula explained that by inspiring a new generation of entrepreneurs these could be a positive knock-on effect for local communities. She said: “By learning how to create their own business, they’ll be taking small steps to turn their passions and interests into money-making concerns and create their own prosperity. By taking control of their own destinies, their hard work and ingenuity will help to keep alive their own Wirral communities which have been so badly affected over the years by recessions and unemployment.”
The troika are also seeking other experienced entrepreneurs willing to have a practical input and who are happy to give up their time in supporting these young people with their new ventures. Their role, as experienced business people, will be to connect with the aspiring young people and share their knowledge and business journeys.
Sandra added: “Wirral has a strong network of professionals operating across many different fields whose knowledge is going to be vital in giving these young people the confidence to start out on their own.”
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