By MELISSA KINSLOW
Special to the Wreckhouse Weekly
PORT AUX BASQUES – CBDC Gateway has a new Youth Co-ordinator this summer. Sara Ford says she is hoping to brighten the futures of local youth, in what is her very first year serving as a youth coordinator.
“I recently graduated with a degree in science and psychology,” said Ford, who is continuing her own studies. “I also plan to attend Optometry school. I’m currently studying for the Optometry Admissions Test.”
Sara hopes to begin her studies in Optometry next fall, meaning she will have to move to Ontario to complete the course this fall. But this summer she hopes to bring more awareness of the offerings available through the Youth Ventures Program.
“I feel it’s important for the youth to become more aware of entrepreneurial opportunities that are around at an earlier age,” said Sara. “Local Businesses are such a big thing right now. Everyone is trying to support local and shop local.”
The Youth Ventures Program is designed to help youth ages 12-29 start up and run their very own business. One of the program’s goals is to introduce the youth to entrepreneurship, and empower them to become an entrepreneur, encouraging them to pursue their own passions.
Participants who wish to avail of the program need to already have a business idea in mind when they contact CBDC Gateway, but even that is something Sara can help them with. No knowledge or experience in business is needed.
“They don’t teach a big lot about business in the schools,” Sara pointed out. “Most kids don’t know anything about business, so the program can really educate them about what it is.”
Among her services as co-ordinator, Sara can provide help with idea generation, brainstorming, marketing, promotion, networking, writing business plans, and connecting young entrepreneurs with an appropriate mentor to go to for advice whenever they need it.
In a typical week, Sara reaches out to previous participants of the program to see if they would like to participate in it again. She also advertises the program online to try and solicit as many participants as she can.
Sara also offers virtual presentations about the program, including those held at the local schools. Last year Youth Co-ordinators weren’t allowed in schools due to the restrictions.
Sara hopes to host events for CBDC Gateway to promote the program, and that may include possible partnerships with non-profit organizations.
“I’ve already been in touch with a few groups in town,” said Sara.
One of Sara’s biggest challenges will be trying to spread the awareness of the program while obeying all of the pandemic protocols in place while trying to make more youth aware of the program, and interested in taking this opportunity.
Anyone who wants to know more information about the program, or would like to sign-up can contact Sara at CBDC Gateway at (709) 695-7406 or via e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more, people can also visit the website at: youthventuresnl.com.