In Vitebsk Region Pupils are Taught How to Run a Business

To communicate with people, create something new and to do business – these are the things that Margarita Leshcheva from 8 D class likes about school business company “Souvenir”. Business company was opened at school #46 in Vitebsk in 2015 within the project “Scholl business companies – the potential for business education of pupils”. The project was implemented by Vitebsk Regional Institute for Education Development. The project is one of 8 projects in the sphere of business education that became the winners of the New Eurasia Establishment Call and were funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

“We organize trade fairs at our school where sell our crafts. Junior pupils are looking forward to such events. During every fair we organize prizes-for-all lottery. For us it is not just fair, but our business. During facultative studies on the basics of entrepreneurship we studied to develop a business plan, to calculate profit. It was difficult but interesting to get into all the details”, said Margarita.

Pupils are planning to develop their business company and to organize festivals for junior pupils, and next year they will start to do hair for girls. Margarita said she had never thought about being an entrepreneurship in future before joining the business company, and now considers such option.

Margarita and her team presented their school business company with 8 other business companies on the final event of the project on April,6 in Vitebsk.

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Business company from school #16, Orsha

“School business companies help pupils to develop proactiveness and enterprise spirit. The development of youth entrepreneurship is very important as young people are more tend to do innovative activities, to create business from low budget starts and have more time and energy for business development in a long-term”, said Ida Sitnikova, project manager and head of department of Vitebsk Regional Institute for Education Development.

Within a one-year project 18 teachers from Vitebsk region were taught on how to organize a business company and more than 80 pupils got acquainted with the basics of entrepreneurship. Teams of pupils guided by trained teachers developed business plans, created school business companies and some of them even gained their first income.

The project has a long-term result, as created school business companies will continue their work, new pupils will join them and their experience can be used by other schools. In the result of the project the partnerships with business community and young entrepreneurs were also established.

Pupils on school business companies:

“Thanks to the project I have changed my opinion that being an entrepreneur is a very easy job. With our team we went through all the stages starting from cherishing the idea till sales of products and I realized that doing business requires a systematic approach. Not only business idea influence the success of the venture but also your work from the very beginning”, said Panteleiko Denis from the gymnasium of Braslav.

“I got inspired by the forum and didn’t expect so many agemates participate in the project. We shared ideas and I got to know many interesting people”, said Vladislav Matesha from the gymnasium of Braslav.

“I think in 10 years I can become an entrepreneur and run a business. I didn’t think about this before joining school business company and even didn’t know what capabilities you should have to become an entrepreneur” said Anna Korotkova, school#46 in Vitebsk.

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Capacity Building for Civil Society Organizations Project is funded by the US Agency for International Development (USAID)