VANCOUVER, British Columbia – October 20, 2008 – From October 20 - 27, 2008, teams of high school students from 35 schools and five provinces across Canada will participate in the inaugural Impact Microcredit Competition. Each team will receive a $100 microloan and will have just one week to generate as much profit as possible during this time, while engaging their school and community in an entrepreneurial project of their choice. The entire proceeds from each school will go to a charity of their choice.
“High school students often hear or learn about business and entrepreneurship in the classroom, but they rarely get a chance to apply that learning with real money,” said Alex Shipillo, the President of the British Columbia Office of the Impact Entrepreneurship Group, which is organizing the competition. “This initiative gives students that opportunity by allowing them to practice social entrepreneurship through Microcredit, a renowned international concept that is drastically curtailing poverty around the world.”
Microcredit is a system of very small loans to start-up entrepreneurs who face challenges in obtaining credit. The concept has brought tens of millions of people out of poverty around the world and the United Nations declared 2005 as the International Year of Microcredit.
The participating teams have three to five students taking part in the competition, and almost no boundaries on what they can do with their microloan. Schools have planned a variety of projects for the week including: a teen music festival, a charity-themed t-shirt production service, and selling personalized stainless-steel water bottles to address the growing environmental concern over plastic bottles.
At the end of the competition, prizes will be awarded based on each team’s innovation, social impact, ability to engage students, and of course, total profit.
The Microcredit Competition is supported by Presenting Partner British Columbia Ministry of Small Business and Revenue, as well as Supporting Partners RBC and Shad Valley.
For more information about the Competition, please visit http://microcredit.impact.org .
About the Impact Entrepreneurship Group
The Impact Entrepreneurship Group is Canada's largest non-profit, student-run organization dedicated to encouraging the entrepreneurial spirit amongst youth in Canada and becoming a starting point and catalyst for youth interested in entrepreneurship and leadership.
More information is available online, http://www.impact.org .