Local schoolchildren participated in a Young Enterprise Masterclass at Belfast City Hall supported by Heron Bros Ltd. The event took place as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week which ran from 16th to 22nd November. This year’s theme of “Make it Happen” encourages young entrepreneurs to seize the opportunity to start their own enterprises.

Pupils from Victoria College, St Louise’s, Hunterhouse; St Mary’s Christian Brothers Grammar School and students from Springvale Learning Centre worked in mixed teams exploring entrepreneurial ideas. Teams learned about the skills necessary for business and pupils were given an opportunity practice these competencies.

In the style of Dragon’s Den, students pitched their ideas on the role of the new Forthriver Innovation Centre in providing socio-economic regeneration for the area. The ‘Dragons’ in the judging panel included representatives from Belfast City Council, Young Enterprise Northern Ireland and Heron Bros Ltd, the main contractor for the Forthriver project.

Teams were then awarded for the ‘Most Creative Idea’; the idea with the ‘Best Community Impact’ and for marketing through the ‘Online Marketing and Social Media Award’. Winning teams are due to receive a site visit to the Forthriver construction site as well as iTunes music vouchers thanks to the event’s sponsor Heron Bros Ltd.

When opened in 2016, the Innovation Centre at Forthriver Business Park will provide support to over 100 businesses and entrepreneurs The Innovation Centre will be a space where entrepreneurs can locate and develop and grow their businesses.

Shauna Young, Community Liaison at Heron Bros Ltd said: “Heron Bros Ltd is delighted to have supported the first innovation masterclass at Belfast City Hall in partnership with Young Enterprise and Belfast City Council. We were extremely impressed with the students who pitched inspiring entrepreneurial ideas to the panel.”