5th and 6th class from Scoil Dean Cussen, Bruff with teacher Julianne O’Brien and Shane Mullane.
George Daly Junior Entrepreneur Programme at Woodlands House Hotel

0ver 700 of Limerick’s future business leaders have been busy….
Primary school children throughout Limerick aren’t too worried about Brexit or Trump at the moment. They have been busy, building businesses and learning skills for the future.
Thirty primary schools throughout Limerick and 732 pupils signed up to this year’s Junior Entre-preneur Programme. The free 12-16 week pro-gramme gives children between the ages of 10 to 12 an insight into running their own businesses.
To date over 35,000 pupils nationally have benefitted from the programme. It’s now available in all 32 counties on this island.
The programme, which was founded by Jerry Kennelly of Tweak.com and devel-oped by the Institute of Technology in Tralee, Mary Immaculate College, Limerick and Shannon Development, brings entrepreneurship into primary schools. It helps pupils develop existing skills such as literacy and numeracy but also new skills such as problem solving, technol-ogy, communication, team building, confidence and creative thinking.
The participating schools showcased their completed projects in Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel, Adare, on Tuesday 30th and Wednesday 31st May.
Projects shown that day included calendars, a clothing range, personal-ised keyrings, food products and cookbooks packed with recipes. The atmosphere was electric as the Junior Entrepreneurs visited the other exhibitors and learned about their projects.
Diarmuid Geary, co-founder of Pallas Foods and sponsor of JEP Limerick, said “These 11 and 12 year old business people are just as enthusiastic and capable as more seasoned business people and I’d be very confident for Limerick’s future under their watch. The objective was to stimulate an enterprise culture and I am delighted that this programme is making such a positive impact in this regard and it was clear to see at the County Showcase Days”.
Mary Fitzgerald, of Fitzgerald’s Woodlands House Hotel and Spa, a JEP Limerick supporter and partner, added: “The JEP County Showcase Day was a great success. It was fantastic to see all the children displaying their products and services and interacting with each other about their businesses. It was clear to see that this programme creates a real entrepreneurial flair in the children and does wonders in developing skills and their self-confidence.”
Class teacher Elaine Lyons from Shountrade National School said: “This has been a fantastic project to be involved in and the children have engaged enthusiastically with the concept from the outset. The project integrates with many aspects of the curriculum especially English and Maths, however they’ve also had the opportunity to develop skills in IT, marketing, manufacturing, sales, customer service and finance. Suddenly, they are interested in calculating percentages and working out profit and loss! From a social aspect the entire project promotes the development of team work and collaborative skills and it encourages creative thinking. Overall it’s been hugely worthwhile activity.”
For more information go to juniorentrepreneur.ie. Schools wishing to take part in the programme should email info@juniorentrepreneur.ie or call 066-9791437.