The Young Entrepreneur’s Program is designed to train and equip young leaders in the city of Los Angeles. It had its start back in the summer of 2016 through some grant money that was given to the World Impact Los Angeles Teen Center. Through a long chain of conversations with many interested people, the idea was landed on investing into the youth by teaching them business principles, marketing, designing a logo for a t-shirt, and then actually screen printing.
As the initial run for this was so successful, they retooled for another round of students. This time they developed a curriculum, modified the process to be more financially sustainable, and bought some more screen printing equipment. The students now apply for interest-free loans for all of their materials, which they qualify for by showing up on time, participating, and developing a solid business plan.
This free two-month program teaches students the power of entrepreneurship, business ethics, budgeting, marketing, designing, and presenting themselves before other local business professionals in a “Shark Tank”-like panel, amongst other skills. It is a powerful thing for them to see, hear, and interact with other entrepreneurs like them who are just a few years ahead of where they are.
This program fits right into the holistic model and focus of World Impact to empower indigenous urban leaders. This gives them practical skills that can be built on for life, networks them with other local business professionals, progresses them financially, and shows them the power of entrepreneurship for community development, all through the filter of being a Jesus-follower.