Youth Social Entrepreneurship Programmes in Singapore
What is Social Entrepreneurship?
Social entrepreneurship starts with a mindset to help promote social causes, and to create awareness of social or environmental problems and needs that exist in our society. Social entrepreneurs plan and organise programs and events to create such awareness and at the same time generate public awareness to contribute to help societies and groups championing social needs and issues. This is a combination of a business model to generate revenue for a good social and environmental cause.
Social Entrepreneurship in Singapore
In Singapore, social entrepreneurship is promoted among a good number of students at school-level today. We start them as early as in elementary school. Students are made aware of non-profit or charitable orgranisations which exist in Singapore. Such organisations may relate toenvironmental or social issues like drugs addiction, youths at risk, autistic children, helping the less privilege.
Citibank-YMCA, Youth For Causes Program
Started in 2002, Youth for Causes program has seen more interest being generated among students in schools. Participants come from elementary schools to university levels. This annual program sponsored by Citibank-YMCA attracts about 100 teams who work of various projects to generate revenue for a good cause. Mentors are assigned to each team to help guide and advise the team on what the project they are organising. This year 2009, over $600,000 was raised for year 2009 for some 50 charitable organisations. This is the highest amount generated despite the economic downturn. Singaporeans still have a big heart to give. President S R Nathan was the Guest of Honour for the event, to congratulate, encourage and give the prizes and awards away that day.
With such awareness and interest, how I wish more sponsors will support such programs, and schools will adopt this program to allow their students to expand their mind and realise the potentials we have in our young people today.