Young Enterprise team makes mark nationally
THE adventures of a dolphin tackling plastic rubbish in the sea carried a Guernsey Young Enterprise team all the way to the national finals in London this week.
YEP Guernsey did not win the competition, but the team said it had been a great experience.
‘We have had an incredible time at the Young Enterprise UK national finals meeting some amazing teams and top UK business leaders,’ the team said.
‘Thank you to everyone who has supported us and huge congratulations to the talented Team Bathe who will represent the UK at the European finals.’
YEP chief executive Lizzie Kennedy said they had never expected to do so well.
‘All of us were very excited at the prospect of representing Guernsey at the regionals in the south-east, but we certainly never expected to make it beyond that,’ she said.
‘It means even more to us to find out that we are the first Young Enterprise team from Guernsey since 1997 to go to the nationals and, on top of everything, it now gives us a further opportunity to raise awareness about the damage we are causing our oceans.
‘YEP has worked very hard as a team, but without the backing of so many people, we could not have gone as far as we have – Island Rib Voyages, Specsavers, Collas Crill have all helped us tremendously, as have individuals such as Rachel Butler, Richard Lord, Karl Taylor and Tina Norman-Ross.’
Miss Kennedy said she and the team had no idea their book was going to be as successful as it had been and, initially, it was no more than the idea of doing something positive to prevent the plastic pollution being found in local waters.
‘We knew straight away that we wanted our main product to be sustainable and be something we could feel proud to promote,’ she said.
‘The Adventures of Fin sort of fell into place after that. We had some storyboard brainstorming sessions and when Ella had produced the first draft, we realised that it was something that children could relate to easily and that we might be on to something.
‘From a marketing perspective we felt the book could work. We believed we had a unique selling point. It was relevant in terms of the social message we wanted to communicate.
‘Of course, it has been wonderful that the book has been so well received. It has made its way to Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United States and many European countries and is even being used as an educational tool in some local primary schools.’
The team at YEP Guernsey felt there was no better time to address the issues they have focused upon, especially living on an island.
Guernsey Young Enterprise area board member Adam Langlois said: ‘As a Guernsey area board, we are extremely proud of the growth we’ve seen in the business but more importantly the personal development of individuals within the company.
‘The skills they have developed over the Young Enterprise experience are clear to see.
‘They produced a high quality product that caught the attention of so many people but we believe it’s the message behind the campaign that they strived so passionately to share that I’m sure will only build greater momentum if they decide to carry on their business.’