Action Entrepreneurship: Growing Young Enterprise
There is an urgent need for Canada to invest in youth entrepreneurship. Youth unemployment is more than double that of older age groups, and half of the entrepreneurs who head the small and medium enterprises – which make up 98 per cent of all businesses in Canada – are retiring in the next decade.
Through Futurpreneur Canada’s Action Entrepreneurship: Growing Young Enterprise initiative, 1,000 young entrepreneurs, business and non-profit leaders, policy makers, educators and others came together in 2014 to advance youth entrepreneurship in Canada. The initiative included face-to-face and virtual roundtable discussions, live chats, surveys, a national summit and more:
- 500 entrepreneurs and leaders took part in 11 face-to-face roundtable events
- 360 people (including 265 entrepreneurs) were consulted through a national young entrepreneur survey commissioned by the Foundation for an Entrepreneurial Canada
- Hundreds of people participated in a Virtual Roundtable and viewed the Live Chat, an online panel discussion with dynamic entrepreneurs from across Canada
- 230 people came together in Toronto in May 2014 for networking, useful workshops, great speakers and action planning at the Action Entrepreneurship Canadian Summit
- Local and national media came out to cover the events. Here are some of the highlights:
- Canada needs to get youth interested in entrepreneurship earlier, summit told
(National Post, May 20, 2014)
- Entrepreneur aids in action plan for youth
(Calgary Herald, May 15, 2014)
- Young entrepreneurs gather at action summit
(calgaryherald.com, May 14, 2014)
- Wanted: young entrepreneurs, Futurpreneur Canada (formerly CYBF) holds roundtables across nation
(The Regina Leader-Post, February 26, 2014)
These activities culminated in a national action plan, Unlocking the Power of Youth Entrepreneurship – An Action Plan for Canada, which recommends specific actions that each stakeholder group can take now to better support existing and future entrepreneurs. Check out this video to see how the plan was developed.
To help advance the plan, Futurpreneur Canada has also developed Action Entrepreneurship Link, an online inventory of programs, activities and events in Canada that support youth entrepreneurship. It allows organizations to demonstrate how they are acting upon the recommendations from entrepreneurs and leaders.