Tuesday 05 November 2013
The Premier League Enterprise Academy ran a project in Africa for the first time recently when a team visited Uganda.
The Premier League Enterprise Academy (PLEA) is a new element of the Premier Skills project, which is jointly run by the Premier League and the British Council.
"The thing I enjoyed most about the training was learning about the Premier League and characteristics of an entrepreneur"
The week-long course was an adaptation of the PLEA programme and the Premier League Enterprise Challenge (PLEC). The course aims to teach young people about the basic principle of business, enterprise and self-employment while addressing a real-life business task in the world of football.
Premier Skills is a partnership between the Premier League and the British Council which uses football as a tool to engage with and develop the skills of young people. It combines the Premier League's global appeal with the British Council's reach and uses football to tackle a variety of social issues in the community, like health, disability, gender, inclusion and education.
The Uganda project involved 20 young entrepreneurs, four teachers from Kitante Hill School and four young people from Premier Skills community projects working together over five days.
The students were taught to think in an entrepreneurial way and were shown business skills by the PLEA Manager Sophie Hukin and Samuel McLoughlin, the community development manager at the Newcastle United Foundation. These skills were then implemented into their own businesses and, in turn, into the new school business run by some of the participants.
The final enterprise task was an activity where students worked together in teams to create and present a business plan for their model football clubs.
The team representing JoJo United Football Club won the competition and Doreen, their chief financial officer, said: "The Enterprise project has been amazing. Winning has been phenomenal. I have learnt to work in a team as well as pitching a business idea.
"I would like to have more football training to increase my confidence while in the field so I can become a professional player like Gael Bigirimana."
"All the students who entered the competition should be proud of themselves, but the judges felt that our team had thoroughly done research and had a simple and achievable concept."
All participants, including Premier Skills trainers received Premier League certificates, hampers from Newcastle United Foundation, footballs and Premier Skills shirts. The school also received a signed Newcastle United shirt which was presented to their principle in a whole school award assembly.
The trainers were so impressed with the students that they pledged to return to Uganda to give opportunities to more youngsters.
"Our purpose is to connect people in the UK to people in other countries and football is a great way to do that," said Peter Brown, the British Council's country director. "We are proud of our partnership with the Premier League and are delighted to be extending the Premier Skills offering in Uganda by introducing the Enterprise Academy."