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Saturday, July 13, 2024

Blackpool school pupils show they’re the best in business after taking part in NatWest Academy

Children from a Blackpool primary school are set for a future in business after pitching their business ideas to a panel of banking and business experts. 

The year six students from Marton Primary School took part in six NatWest Academy sessions, which taught the pupils everything from saving and budgeting to understanding financial fraud, sustainability and starting out in business.

Pupils at Marton Primary School, Blackpool, with the judging panel at the NatWest Academy.

The business idea judged as the winner of the pitch was a sustainable clothing brand, which captured the judges’ attention because of their charitable aspirations and market research.

Year Six pupil Archie, who was on part of the winning team, said: “I now know how to keep safe with money and understand how to prevent money fraud. It was an amazing opportunity working on our business projects. I learned so much about business and about how to improve my skills. We presented our business idea to the judges who all worked in industry. They asked some very challenging questions which really made us think.”

The pupils presented their ideas to representatives from NatWest as well as local business owners Tim Hislop of Floss & Rock Limited and Chris Calvert of Rushton’s Accountants.

As a prize, the pupils will receive a tour of the judges’ businesses to learn even more about the world of enterprise.

Lisa Ford, Regional Director at NatWest, also sat on the judging panel. She said: “I was really impressed by the wide range of business ideas the young people pitched to us today and think that they could have a really bright future ahead of them in business should they want to. Not only had they really thought about the benefits the business would bring, they had also done market research to demonstrate its viability and showed how they would work as a team to maximise the business.”

Head of School, Alice Coyle, added: “The children at Marton Primary Academy and Nursery have gained so much out of the work they have been doing with NatWest bank. The children are developing a real money sense,which is preparing them well for the future. They thoroughly enjoyed working collaboratively on their business projects and presenting their ideas to the panel of judges.”

The judging panel at the NatWest Academy. L to R Tim Hislop, Floss & Rock, Lisa Ford NatWest regional director and Chris Calvert of Rushton’s Accountants.

Chetan Bharucha, Senior Relationship Manager at NatWest, developed and delivered the NatWest Academy for Marton Primary, with the help of colleagues Milly Read, Fiona Bermingham and Umar Bootwala, encouraging colleagues to get involved and use their volunteering days to help deliver and support the sessions at the school.

Chetan said: “I had an idea during the pandemic to use my own expertise to help inspire children that may not have access to financial education to understand how they could one day set up a business.

“I’ve loved seeing how the young people have embraced the opportunity to learn and how they’ve grown in confidence over the six weeks. It’s fantastic to think that this programme has not only given them money skills and confidence that will benefit them right away but also has hopefully inspired them to think – at 10 years old – that in future they could start their own businesses. The next objective will be taking the NatWest Academy to other schools across the country.”

As part of their learning programme, the pupils took part in the NatWest MoneySense programme, a free financial education package for children aged five to 18, which is used in 60% of secondary schools and 58% of primary schools across the UK. Since MoneySense began in 1994, it has helped 11 million young people learn about money.

All of the pupils who took part received NatWest goodies including reusable water bottles, stationery and t-shirts to celebrate their participation in the programme.

More information on the free MoneySense educational resources can be found at: https://natwest.mymoneysense.com/young-adults/

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