Kids give up week’s summer holiday to go to business school in Whitechapel

Mulberry pupils Helen Kabir (left) and Radia Begum with Bank of England volunteer Dawn Khajadour, an

Mulberry pupils Helen Kabir (left) and Radia Begum with Bank of England volunteer Dawn Khajadour, an ex-pupil herself - Credit: TH Education Business Partnership

Teenagers swapped a week of their summer holiday to return to the classroom at an educational business school in London’s East End.

Some 40 youngsters turned up at the sessions held at Whitechapel’s Mulberry School for Girls who were mentored by volunteers from businesses and universities to learn about customer relations, profit and loss and some craft skills.

One of the business volunteers, Dawn Khajadour, is an ex-Mulberry School pupil herself, now working at the Bank of England.

“I do a lot a lot of my volunteering in the East End, where I grew up,” she said. “It’s good to be able to help the young kids come through.”

The youngsters also put together an enterprise selling greetings cards, hand-decorated photo frames, keyrings, cupcakes and sweets to staff at Clifford Chance law firm and Bank of America Merrill Lynch in Canary Wharf.

Their enterprise raised £800 with profits being sent to the Teenage Cancer Trust and Richard House children’s hospice in Beckton.

Cathy Jones, from Clifford Chance, said: “This event helps develop the ‘soft’ skills many youngsters struggle with—how to approach and speak to someone you don’t know, to explain quickly and articulately what you are doing. They grew in confidence in just a couple of hours.”

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The final day had the teenagers entering their own Dragons’ Den to make their business pitch to a panel that included London Metal Exchange chief Martin Abbott and bankers from Canary Wharf.

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