The finals of the Enterprise Challenge Pakistan were held at the British Deputy High Commission on 18th November.
The programme is a Prince’s Trust International Initiative and was launched in Pakistan in September 2015 after a successful run in the UK since 2008.
It is essentially a simulation challenge designed to instil entrepreneurship in young people in the age bracket of 13 to 16 years, who learn the basics of setting up their own enterprises with the help of mentors. In Pakistan, Enterprise Challenge has been executed at the national level, across the country in different schools ensuring representation of all provinces. Hence, schools from 10 cities participated in its very first year with 300 students from Karachi, Lahore, Rawalpindi, Islamabad, Quetta, Pashin, Peshawar, Mardan, Muzaffarabad, and Shigar Gilgit-Baltistan. More than 2,750 students were engaged, out of which 300 participants were selected through an extensive selection process. The first cycle of Enterprise Challenge culminated with the National Finals where six teams that had emerged from the regional finals with the highest scores pitched live in front of a panel of judges and audiences The winning team was from Pishin, Baluchistan. An audience poll was also held and the team from Gilgit-Baltistan was awarded audience choice award.
British High Commissioner Thomas Drew, Deputy High Commissioner Belinda Lewis, Prince’s Trust International CEO Alan Kennedy from the UK, and distinguished members of the business fraternity, public sector, and academia were present.
Talking about the initiative, Drew said, “The first time I had heard that Enterprise Challenge Pakistan was being executed in schools, I thought to myself what a great age group that must be to introduce entrepreneurship to,” adding that the UK government would support it in the future.
Published in The Express Tribune, November 24th, 2016.