TOBAGO’S GEW EXPERIENCE

Glendora Lashley

Glendora Lashley

The Lily Foundation for Human Development based in Tobago, has been actively involved in Global Entrepreneurship Week for the past three (3) years. Incorporated in 2010 as a non-governmental organization, the Lily Foundation seeks to facilitate personal and general growth and development of individuals. The founding principles of the organization which include helping people, using education as a key to positive holistic development and poverty alleviation,  all point in the direction of growth for those who are fortunate in becoming beneficiaries.

There is an entrepreneurial focus in the work facilitated by the organization. In addition to other entrepreneurial initiatives, the Foundation has been using GEW as a conduit to broaden their reach throughout communities in Tobago. Managing Director of the Foundation, Glendora Lashley, believes that there is definitely a need for initiatives aimed at encouraging entrepreneurship on the island. As she puts it “domestic, regional and international networking events for the island’s business owners are a necessity; there are many individuals under age 40, with good ideas for entrepreneurial initiatives.”

For GEW this year, the organization plans to host an event aimed at facilitating new start-ups by bringing together potential funding agencies, mentors, as well a Human Development Specialist with significant experience in business development. On-the-spot assessments will be made with a view to generating loan applications. Additional details on this event will be posted via social media, as well as the organization’s website www.thelilyfoundatinfhd.org.

Another  major initiative being undertaken in 2016 by the Foundation, is the launch of a twenty-four hour full service Child Facilitation (both child care and pre-school) for children aged 2-5 years. The first of its kind on the island, this establishment will operate as a business, employing at least 8-10 persons in the first instance, with an initial intake of 40 children.

 

By: Sandrine Rattan

Project Co-ordinator – Stakeholder & Media Relations (YBTT)

 

Published in the Trinidad and Tobago Newsday on Thursday, September 24th, 2015

ENTREPRENEURS LINKING ENTREPRENEURS TO THE CREATIVE INDUSTRIES FOR GEW 2015!

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The Creative Industries sector has always been identified as a pathway for growth given its capacity to add tremendous value to the process of economic diversification in Trinidad and Tobago. Globally, the creative and cultural economy is an important conversation that is aligned to a growing part of world economies. Governments across the world are increasingly recognizing the significance of this sector as a creator of jobs, wealth and to a larger extent, cultural engagement. At the core of creative economies, are the cultural and creative industries which commonly lie at the crossroads of arts and culture.

The special edition of the United Nations Economy Report 2013, described the creative economy as one of the most fastest growing sectors around the world, as well as one that possesses high levels of export earnings. Unlocking the potential of creative economies, also means promoting the overall ingenuity of societies, thereby attesting to the distinct identity of the places where it develops, improving the quality of lives, and ultimately strengthening the entrepreneurial capacity within the economy.

This sector will come alive for Global Entrepreneurship Week 2015, with the hosting of “Entrepreneurs Linking Entrepreneurs”, an event designed to demonstrate the unrevealed  potential that resides within the creative industries which consist of eight (8) sub-sectors including music, film, fashion, dance and theatre which also encompasses visual and performing arts, broadcasting, literature and publishing, heritage and festivals including Carnival. GEW’s focus will be the Fashion Industry, 3D Animation and our national instrument, the Steelpan.

Keynote speaker at this event will be Heather Jones, the quintessential artist of this millennium representing the transitional era of the fashion industry. According to Jones “love and romance is a consciousness that goes deeper than a notion of a pretty dress; the fashion industry is now being repositioned globally beyond the external look.” With some 34 years of progressive experience, Jones is set on articulating the importance of the industry towards economic growth and development, particularly in relation to the national conversation on economic diversification.  The socio-economic power of 3D Animation and the Steelpan will be espoused by young YBTT Entrepreneurs Joshua Mangroo, CEO, of NineBreaker Limited and Brian Benoit, CEO, Benoit’s Academy of the SteelPan.

 

By: Sandrine Rattan

Project Co-ordinator – Stakeholder & Media Relations (YBTT)

 

Published in the Trinidad and Tobago Newsday on Thursday, September 17th, 2015

Barbados to host Caribbean Youth Entrepreneurship Summit

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PRESS RELEASE – Regional policymakers, young entrepreneurs, and other major stakeholders, will meet in Barbados on Thursday 24th September, 2015 during the Caribbean Youth Entrepreneurship Summit (C-YES), to chart a future for youth entrepreneurship in the Caribbean.

The C-YES is a new platform for entrepreneurs and policy makers, to collectively build a better future for entrepreneurship development in the Caribbean.It will also provide a golden opportunity to engage governments, regional stakeholders and other institutions in an examination of our entrepreneurial ecosystem, with a view to further strengthening the impact of entrepreneurship as a driver of economic growth in the region.

The Summit will be formally opened by Honourable Stephen Lashley, Minister of Culture, Sport and Youth and opening remarks will be delivered by Ambassador Larry L. Palmer, U.S. Ambassador, Barbados and Eastern Caribbean.

Trinidad and Tobago entrepreneur, Mrs. Tameika Fletcher-Birmingham shall deliver the keynote address. Other speakers include Mr. David Clarke, Chairman of the Barbados Youth Business Trust and representatives from UWI, CARICOM, the Caribbean Development Bank and Youth Business International.

C-YES will be co-hosted by a number of agencies that support young entrepreneursfrom Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, St. Lucia and Dominica along with London-based network organization Youth Business International (YBI), who have reinforced their commitment towards the continued development of youth entrepreneurship. During the past three (3) years, these organizations have been working collaboratively to deliver the Youth Entrepreneurship Program for the Eastern Caribbean (YEPEC), with funding fromUSAID.

YEPEC involved the delivery of high quality training, mentoring and network support to help young people to establish sustainable businesses, as well as capacity-building of the institutions involved in the provision of this support.

– See more at: St. Lucia News Online

 

“STUDENTS TO CONNECT WITH ENTREPRENEURS” (GEW 2015)

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Global Entrepreneurship Week usually brings with it high levels of creativity and innovation all aimed at bringing out the best in the global entrepreneurial community, and therein lies the importance of an entrepreneurial ecosystem.  The  Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN), has identified  five (5) pivotal  areas necessary for creating a supportive ecosystem simply branded Connect, Celebrate, Understand, Support and Compete.

According to the GEN framework, entrepreneurs need to continuously connect with investors, policymakers, researchers and community leaders; the success stories generated by entrepreneurs must be celebrated with a view to inspiring future entrepreneurs; entrepreneurs need to understand the importance of each cycle of the entrepreneurial spectrum; support for entrepreneurs is critical and includes programs and resources that can assist in their success, and entrepreneurs need to compete in various forums to foster their creative and innovative capacity.

Based on this framework, YBTT started the implementation of same since GEW 2014 in terms of  reinforcing the importance of a sound ecosystem. For GEW 2015 scheduled for November 16th – 22nd, 2015, the trend will continue, and in so doing, specific events will be facilitated. The first of these is an “Entrepreneurial Outreach” designed to inculcate a sense of entrepreneurial conscience in the minds of stakeholders. Key stakeholders who contribute to entrepreneurial development in Trinidad and Tobago, would be part of this experience, which would also allow for entrepreneurs to obtain an indepth understanding of the myriad of resources and programmes available to support them in becoming successful.

Another GEW initiative which would be implemented by YBTT is a National Entrepreneurial Survey the sole purpose of which is to gather data to understand the gaps and challenges, as well as the existence of untapped opportunities which entrepreneurs can take advantage of. Support will be required from stakeholders in providing information necessary to fill the gaps and treat with the challenges identified in this survey, which is deemed to be an ideal start in strengthening this country’s eco-system.

The creative industry is an important sector on the entrepreneurial landscape, and will be the thrust upon which the national symposium, another GEW event, will be facilitated. Secondary school students will be part of this creative experience which will showcase the innovative potential of the steelpan, fashion and animation, all of which are significant to the effective functioning of this sector. This initiative would enable these students to connect with entrepreneurs within the creative industry. For this year’s GEW celebrations, YBTT is challenging both existing and potential partners to plan activities surrounding these five (5) pivotal areas. To become a partner, send us an email at srattan@ybtt.org.

 

By: Sandrine Rattan

Project Co-ordinator – Stakeholder & Media Relations (YBTT)

 

Published in the Trinidad and Tobago Newsday on Thursday, September 10th, 2015

HOWARD PRESIDENT TO ADDRESS JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT YOUTH CONFERENCE

Dr. Wayne Fredericks

Dr. Wayne Fredericks

The President of Howard University, Trinidad-born, Dr. Wayne Frederick, will be the keynote speaker at the Global Entrepreneurship Week’s (GEW) Student Conference in November. Junior Achievement will partner with Youth Business Trinidad & Tobago (YBTT), in hosting the event which usually attracts a wide group of stakeholders, all of whom contribute to entrepreneurial development in the national community. Junior Achievement is the world’s largest organization dedicated to empowering young people through knowledge and skills needed to own their economic success and plan for their future and smart academic choices.

The Trinidad and Tobago arm of JA, has been the member nation to start operations within the Caribbean and Latin America. JA’s approach to preparing youngsters to face the world also includes a taste of entrepreneurship, which is reflected in the organization’s continued presence in secondary schools. JA’s involvement in Global Entrepreneurship Week, revolves around the annual hosting of a conference specifically designed for young men from across  secondary schools, and communities in Trinidad and Tobago. Themed “GEW’s Student Conference”, the event is scheduled for November 17th (Tobago) and November 18th (Queen’s Hall, Trinidad).

Structured in the form of a panel discussion, the event provides an opportunity for participants to interact with male role models on their specific areas of interest. According to JA’s Executive Chairman, J. Errol Lewis “over the years, we have seen an evolution of transformation in the lives of young men who were privileged to have shared in this experience, and as a result, we’ve decided to maintain it as our signature event for GEW.”

Apart from Frederick, other speakers include citizens who have a record of helping other young males in their aspirations to achieve. These include Lewis,  who for some 40-plus years, has dedicated his life and work towards the advancement and development of youths; Neil Shaka Hislop, a name synonymous with football both at local and international levels. Hislop was also awarded the Chaconia Gold Medal, and is a Broadcaster with ESPN. Also,  Dr. Clive Dottin, Public Affairs & Religious Liberty Director of the Caribbean Union Conference Seventh-Day Adventists, who is no stranger to youth development, and Brig.  Gen Anthony Phillips-Spencer, who has had over 33 years service in the Defence Force.

JA continues to be committed to youth development, and once again, YBTT welcomes the support from this organization for GEW 2015!

By: Sandrine Rattan

Project Co-ordinator – Stakeholder & Media Relations (YBTT)

 

Published in the Trinidad and Tobago Newsday on Thursday, September 3rd, 2015