As part of the International Day of Education on 24th January, we put the spotlight on our education programmes. According to the UN, 244 million children are out of school and 771 million adults are unable to read or write. Even for young people who are in school, attendance alone does not necessarily lead to achievement.
Our education programmes provide alternative approaches to learning, supporting young people to re-engage with formal education, while also equipping them with the skills they need to thrive whenever they finish their schooling. We hope you enjoy reading the latest news about how these initiatives are empowering young people to succeed.
Sports and songs: news from Achieve programmesAchieve helps students to develop essential life skills, such as self-confidence, communication and teamwork. Using practical, topic-based learning, young people work on projects in small groups. In some countries, the programme works primarily with young people who are struggling with their learning and at risk of dropping out, supporting them to re-engage and succeed in education.
Ghana: In the last week of January, we held a Unified Sports event as part of our Achieve programme. With our delivery partner Junior Achievement Ghana, and Special Olympics Ghana, we brought together students from a mainstream school and students from a special school for a day of inclusive sport. The event aimed to promote inclusivity, breaking down barriers and stereotypes around young people with learning disabilities. It was widely covered in the Ghanaian media, including on television.
Greece and Serbia: Our new Achieve pilot programmes in Greece and Serbia are now up and running, through our partners Tipping Point and GRUBB. So far, the pilots have reached over 170 young people. In Greece the programme is active in two schools in Athens and Thessaloniki, while in Serbia it works with young people from the Roma community.
Malta: Congratulations to songwriter and rapper Renson (18), who in January reached the semi-finals of Malta’s Got Talent. Renson’s television performances, under his stage name Munity, have reached thousands of viewers. But he wasn’t always so confident. ‘When I started rapping I never believed I would be able to do it in front of an audience,’ Renson recalls. ‘Being a PTI Achieve student helped me to believe more in myself.’ The Achieve programme in Malta, delivered through the Ministry of Education, has been generously funded by the HSBC Malta Foundation since its launch in 2015.
Ghana and Rwanda: January saw Enterprise Challenge national finals in both countries. Team Fruitsy were crowned the first ever winners in Rwanda, with their idea of healthy fruit smoothies. They plan to spend their prize money on a blender and on recipe advice from a professional nutritionist. In Ghana, Team Mervs won the contest with their plan to tackle waste from palm oil production, producing and selling smokeless fuel briquettes made from waste palm kernels, as an alternative to cooking with charcoal or wood.
Pakistan: The Enterprise Challenge National Finals will take place in February and we look forward to hearing the teams’ business ideas. In 2022, prize-winning concepts included coconut crockery and eco-friendly fish farming. Last year, more than 620 young people from 43 schools took part in the Enterprise Challenge Pakistan programme, delivered through our partner SEED Ventures. This year, the programme has scaled up dramatically, reaching more than double the number of schools.
Girls in science: eco-friendly fish-farming
To mark the International Day of Girls and Women in Science on 11th February, we celebrate Team Fishure, runners-up in Enterprise Challenge Pakistan 2022. The team’s business idea draws on cutting-edge biofloc technology to trial the cultivation of protein-rich food at an affordable price. Biofloc is an eco-friendly system which uses micro-organisms to recycle fish waste and enhance water quality.
‘It’s a technology that converts fish waste into fish food,’ explains Ritika (17), who was the financial and marketing lead for the all-female team. ‘We want to provide good, healthy fish at a good price, so that everyone can afford them.