Pupils at St Mary's Primary School who sell soup made with vegetables they grow were among scores of budding entrepreneurs whose talents shone this week at an event in Edinburgh for pupil-run social enterprises.
The youngsters already put profits back into the community by organising activities for elderly people and those who are vulnerable to isolation but they plan to do more by expanding services to support Ukrainian refugees.
Along with Broughton High School, the pupils were celebrated at awards on Thursday for a Scottish-based programme that empowers young people to set up “socially conscious” businesses.
Broughton High picked up a Champion Award for their Bro Enterprise, which is relaunching their popular café as an outdoor eatery called BRO-on-the-GO for spring and summer.
Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills, Shirley-Anne Somerville, congratulated young people from 56 schools across Scotland at the annual Scottish Social Enterprise Academy Awards at the Assembly Rooms.
The Minister said the programme had a vital role to play in helping young people as communities recover from the covid-19 pandemic.
More than twenty of the schools showcased their enterprise at a special marketplace on the day.
The Social Enterprise Academy, which runs the schools programme now in its 15th year, hopes to support every school in the country to help pupils set up their own social enterprise by 2024.
Mrs Kehoe, head teacher at St Mary’s Primary, said: “Social Enterprise plays an important role in the development of our pupils and it is wonderful to see them channel their social aspirations and create the change they want to see in the world.”
Neil McLean, CEO at the Social Enterprise Academy, said: “By giving young people a real-life experience of running their own social enterprise in school, our programme delivers transformational learning which impacts them and their community.
“The young people participating are of all ages and abilities, and they are passionate and articulate advocates of social enterprise, not only inspiring people in their own communities, but also people and communities across the world in countries such as Australia, Malaysia, Egypt and South
“Thanks to support from The Scottish Government, we aim to give every school in Scotland the opportunity to create their own social enterprise by 2024.”
Shirley-Anne Somerville said: “Social Enterprise Schools plays an extremely important role in the development of Scotland’s young people as we recover from Covid-19. By
establishing a social enterprise in their school, pupils are engaging in the practical and creative skills required to run a business while making a difference to causes they truly care about.
“They are gaining in confidence and improving their own wellbeing as well as that of their peers and local community.
“It has been wonderful to play a part in such a special day as we come together to celebrate the success of schools from across Scotland.
“I look forward to supporting the Social Enterprise Academy as it continues to offer the programme to even more schools across the country.”