Bloggers for Charity: 16 Going on 30

As a preface a while back I asked my readers to join into the Bloggers for Charity program that was started by the Blunt Beancounter. I was glad to hear from other participants how much money was being paid to charity to get a Guest Post on their blogs, I was also disappointed to see no one take me up on the offer (you had your chance, I will return to my standard Guest Post policy in the future).

The Blunt Bean Counter actually had such a great response that he had folks on his “waiting list” so I am helping out by having a young writer who donated $200 to write a Guest Post. The topic which is a little off topic for me, but still a very good subject is about Junior Achievement.

I recommend you have a look for other Bloggers for Charity as well!

16 Going on 30

By Rosie Mandla

Guest Post: Charity Competition

There is something extremely satisfying about investing in the leaders of tomorrow.  I’m not talking about opening your wallet and handing out a twenty dollar bill – instead, taking time from your busy schedule and sharing your years of experience and wisdom with the young’ins. Just think… someday we’ll all have to pass the throne on to the next generation.

Junior Achievement (JA) is a not for profit organization created to inspire youth to succeed in our ever-changing and global economy.  JA’s premise and continuance depends heavily on the direct involvement of today’s business masters.  What better way to support the leaders of tomorrow than by passing practical guidance from the leaders of today?

A few years ago, a friend invited me to be an advisor for the Company Program with the firm I was working for. The Company Program is one of many programs run by JA, and it inspires high school students to understand the role of business in our society by founding and operating an enterprise of their own.

So that is what we did. For eight long months, a group of 30 or so students from various high schools met weekly and started a company. This included issuing shares to each member, setting up Facebook groups to share product ideas, weekly trips to the dollar store in an effort to minimize product costs, advertising their product on a personally developed website, canvassing door to door to sell their product (I was wrong… opening up your wallet and taking out a twenty dollar bill does help too), and producing proper accounting records.

I admit, the process had its ups and downs. Sometimes products did not pass the quality control test, and the website’s user experience was questionable.  However, in the end, what impressed me the most was the perseverance and creativity these students displayed. To see the transformation from clueless adolescents to legitimate business novices was utterly amazing.  Not to mention their profit margins!

By teaching our youth the fundamentals of business early, we promote entrepreneurship, innovation, and resourcefulness.  It is with this knowledge and awareness that we, each and as a society, prosper.  As the Chinese proverb goes, “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”.  I parallel this quote to JA’s mandate.

I will conclude by saying that there are many worthy charities that each aim to better this world in some way. For me, there is nothing more gratifying than knowing that my words may have impacted the life of one student.  And that student may grow to change the lives of many others.

For more details about Junior Achievement, you can visit their website at http://www.jacan.org.

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  • Echo January 17, 2012, 8:59 AM

    Helping out with Junior Achievement was one of the most rewarding volunteer experiences of my life. Thanks for sharing your story.

    Reply
  • The Blunt Bean Counter January 17, 2012, 7:42 AM

    Big Cajun Man- thx for participating in Bloggers for Charity. Great post by Rosie on a good cause.

    Reply

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