Schoolpreneur 2023: School Entrepreneurship Day Celebrated Across Sri Lanka
Schoolpreneur 2023: School Entrepreneurship Day was conducted across Sri Lanka on November 16th, with over 2000 school students from the nine provinces participating at the event organised by The Ceylon Chamber of Commerce, in collaboration with the International Labour Organization, endorsed by the Ministry of Education.
Conducted simultaneously in Anuradhapura, Badulla, Colombo, Galle, Kandy, Puttalam, Ratnapura, Trincomalee and Vavuniya, the event celebrated the spirit of entrepreneurship amongst Sri Lanka’s youth.
Speaking at the event in Colombo, Minister of Education Hon. Dr. Susil Premajayantha, stated ‘Today, in Sri Lanka, we commemorate Entrepreneurship Day, a momentous occasion. I extend my gratitude to the Ceylon Chamber, the ILO and all other partners and sponsors for their instrumental roles in facilitating this event. The significance of entrepreneurship has garnered substantial attention in contemporary discussions. It’s imperative that we prioritize fostering research and innovation within all our educational institutions to effectively promote and cultivate an entrepreneurial spirit. This emphasis on innovation is crucial for nurturing the entrepreneurial mindset among our future generations, especially in schools.’
Secretary General and CEO of the Ceylon Chamber Mr. Buwanekabahu Perera, ‘The Ceylon Chamber is proud to play an integral role in fostering entrepreneurship and innovation among Sri Lanka’s youth, by organizing a nationwide School Entrepreneurship Day. This event holds great significance, especially in nurturing entrepreneurial skills among young individuals, notably within schools. Encouraging entrepreneurship early instils business acumen and fosters innovation, problem-solving, and forward-thinking mindsets. This investment in youth entrepreneurship not only builds a strong foundation for their future but also greatly contributes to the nation’s economic growth.’
Adding to this, Dr. Thomas Kring, Chief Technical Advisor of ILO stated ‘In our pursuit of creating meaningful and productive employment opportunities for all Sri Lankans, the promotion of entrepreneurship emerges as a crucial focus. Sri Lanka has a relatively young population, presenting a significant opportunity for the nation’s advancement. However, this potential can only be fully realized if urgent concerns like escalating unemployment are effectively tackled. Hence, the ILO is committed to fostering entrepreneurship as a strategic approach to address these challenges and harness the potential of the country’s burgeoning young population.
Students participating at Schoolpreneur 2023 in all nine provinces, participated in a variety of engaging activities, including workshops, competitions and idea pitching, centered around the key themes of fostering innovation and entrepreneurship.
Schoolpreneur 2023 is a flagship initiative of ILO’s South Asia Leadership in Entrepreneurship (SALE) project, of which the Ceylon Chamber is the principle implementing partner, and which seeks to facilitate a change in the entrepreneurial ecosystem and bolster young people’s transition into the entrepreneurial world. By introducing a day dedicated to celebrating and encouraging entrepreneurship as an annual event on the school calendar, the project aims to ensure sustained training and development of students and aspiring youth entrepreneurs through a variety of training, mentorship and development opportunities.
Through strategic interventions such as these, ILO’s SALE project, funded by the U.S Department of State endeavours to create a shift in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, and enhance capacity among the youth to enable them to launch and grow their own business ventures.
Photo Caption- Highlights from the Schoolpreneur event, hosted across all 9 provinces of Sri Lanka