Funding to nurture young entrepreneurs

High school pupils take part in an Audacious workshop with Startup Dunedin’s programme...
High school pupils take part in an Audacious workshop with Startup Dunedin’s programme facilitator Angus Pauley. PHOTO: CHRISTIAN MACFARLANE
Startup Dunedin and Innov8HQ have more than $18,000 in Government funding to get more young people into entrepreneur programmes.

Last year the Ministry of Youth Development opened The Youth Enterprise and Entrepreneurship funding stream to support young people (12 to 24 years) to be better prepared for the future work environment.

Startup Dunedin, a not-for-profit trust that helps co-ordinate Dunedin start-up companies, applied for the funding to add to their current entrepreneur programme for tertiary students, Audacious.

The amount given by the ministry was $18,675.

It has since partnered with Innov8HQ to create a new programme targeted at young people from a more diverse background and who are often not in the tertiary system.

"Startup Dunedin believes that good ideas are everywhere but individuals that choose not to, or cannot engage with tertiary study often miss out on opportunities like Audacious," its programme manager, Rachel Butler, said.

Audacious teaches entrepreneurial skills including finances, marketing, problem solving, and encourages engagement with the wider Dunedin business community.

Last year it had more than 160 applicants.

Startup Dunedin ran a series of focus groups around Dunedin to find out what youth initiatives existed.

From that, Startup Dunedin partnered with Heidi Renata and her co-working office, Innov8HQ.

“This funding allows youth an opportunity to exercise leadership and build confidence regardless of their next steps,’’ Ms Renata said.

Ms Renata co-founded Innov8HQ in 2016 to grow intergenerational and indigenous entrepreneurship and has been supporting rangatahi pathways into business and entrepreneurship for some years.

Ms Renata said she was excited to co-develop the programme and give youth the ability to explore pathway options.

The collaborative programme, yet to be named, will launch early this year and offer 100 places to Dunedin rangatahi.

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