Mon | May 20, 2019

British Council and Victoria Mutual Foundation launch social enterprise programme

Published:Sunday | May 6, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Mark Howard (centre left), regional director for the Americas at the British Council, Courtney Campbell (centre right), chairman of the Victoria Mutual Foundation Limited, with colleagues, students and staff at the Kingston Technical High School for the ribbon-cutting ceremony to mark the schools participation in the Social Enterprise in Secondary Schools Programme.

The British Council in partnership with Victoria Mutual Foundation Limited and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information (MoEYI), recently launched a three-year social enterprise in secondary schools programme.

Six secondary schools St Elizabeth Technical High School, Montego Bay High School, Kingston Technical High School, Charlie Smith High School, Greater Portmore High School, and Denbigh High have been selected to participate in the pilot programme, which aims to increase students' knowledge of social innovation and entrepreneurship.

Using the British Council's Social Enterprise in Schools Resource Pack, which also incorporates the British Council core skills, it is expected that this programme will help to address the gap in global skills development, which is critical to meeting the needs of students in the 21st century in a globalised economy. In addition to the six core skills critical thinking and problem solving, collaboration and communication, creativity and imagination, citizenship, digital literacy, and student leadership the programme will also include financial literacy as the seventh core skill.

Country Director of the British Council, Olayinka Jacobs Bonnick said, "This is the flagship programme for our youth and social enterprise portfolio, but it's also a very important opportunity for us to move towards a common future together as we support teachers and young people, both in Jamaica and the UK, to gain the 21st-century skills necessary to excel in an interconnected world."




The programme is being funded jointly by Victoria Mutual Foundation Limited, whose chairman, Courtney Campbell, said, "We see this as critical to fulfilling our mission of improving the quality of the lives of Jamaicans through financial empowerment."

Under the programme, four teachers from each selected school, from grades 7-9, will be trained in social enterprise concepts, approaches, and interactive techniques.

The programme will include activities such as field trips and setting up an actual social enterprise with seed funding.

Students will be taught to develop an awareness and understanding of how starting their own business can help to address social problems and offer practical experiences in planning and setting up their own social enterprise.