Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Kiddo-Preneur Summer Bazaar 2014: Rearing Children to Become the Next Business Tycoon

Wazzup Pilipinas!Our parents would often tell us to study hard so we can get a good job after college, but are we really working our butts off just to work for somebody else? Is that how far our college degrees will take us? It might be worst if we land on a job that does not have any relation to our courses.

Working for a company is fine as a stepping stone, but nowadays, it's more rewarding to also be your own boss by setting up your own business and become something better than just an employee: an entrepreneur.

But setting up a business is not really something you can easily read from a book and learn instantly. You need to be extremely patient, persistent, optimistic, and have many other important attributes and qualities to become an entrepreneur. You also kinda have to feel it out and do it for yourself to experience how it really is. But why wait until you graduate from the academic world when it's more ideal to start as young as possible. If it's too late for us, then let's offer the opportunity to our kids who have the most benefit to gain if they learn about entrepreneurship as early as today.

The advocacy of the Kiddo-preneur Summer Bazaar, now on its 5th year, is centered on the idea of teaching kids the value of money. Kids see us spending all the time to buy food, clothes and other basic necessities and luxuries but we don't involve them in the process of making money. This is why a lot of Filipinos even at an older age still depend on their parents for financial stability.

It will be nice to teach our kids how to be sort of financially independent or at least get them to realize that when they grow up they have to think of ways on how to earn money. Let's get them to start thinking about ways on how to earn while they are still young, with our loving guidance and support.

"At the Kiddo-preneur Summer Bazaar, kids learn about math, money and entrepreneurship. They learn about the value of a hard days work. For this little exercise, the children will understand "na mahirap pala ang ginagawa ng mga magulang natin." They will understand that money doesn't grow on trees....that you have to think of ways to earn money." says Maiki Oreta, organizer of Kiddo-Preneur Summer Bazaar.

This was stated by Maiki Oreta during the presscon held at Robinson's Manila Atrium during the event proper itself. The panel also included her husband Quinto Oreta from Major Homes, Francis Oliva from PLDT SME Nation, and Dolli Bufi from Robinson's Land.

Kiddo-preneur press conference panelist Dolli Bufi of Robinsons's Land, Maiki Oreta of Kiddo-preneur, Francis Oliva of PLDT SME Nation, and Quinto Oreta of Major Homes

While some kids are wildly successful during the first run of the bazaar where a group of kids earned P120,000 pesos in 5 hours, not everybody was as successful. There were some kids that were just break-even. But it makes them learn from their mistakes and how to stand up again to give it another try for better results since now they will are more equipped with the learning they personally encountered from the Kiddo-Preneur experience.

It's fantastic that we have a business now but we also have to learn how to save, invest or donate as a social responsibility act. So for the children since they are already earning, the "save" component of the bazaar is with banks like BPI who's people were there at the event ready to assist if the kids want to save and get their very first ATM account. They just have to show their school ID and can sign up right there and then and get their card immediately.

Top view of Kiddo-preneur Bazaar

For the Kiddo-preneur Summer Bazaar's "invest" concept, they also tied up with other financial institution like the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) - institutions who would normally close their doors to children but the organizers took the children to show them how money was printed, they were able to talk with one of the monetary board directors, they were able to interview the PSE President and CEO Hans Sicat, which really aims to introduce the kids to the investment opportunities of the business world.

The "donate" concept of the Kiddo-preneur Summer Bazaar encourages the children to donate a portion of the proceeds to charity, or if do not want to donate money they can donate their time instead because time is money as well. They donate their time and involve themselves in an age-appropriate reading, feeding, tree-planting program.

This makes the Kiddo-Preneur Summer Bazaar the full gamut. It's not just about earning the money, it's about doing what you can with it. It's a tool for parents to teach their kids about business. The parents and kids work hand-in-hand. The kids pitch to their parents "Mom, I need P500 pesos because I need to buy supplies at a bookstore to make my booth attractive. " Now the parents will ask, "How much are you going to price your products para makabawi tayo?" - It becomes a whole different conversation between the kids and parents.

"It's very important that from a grassroots level, we are able to create economic and employment growth and power so as to encourage more people to stay in the country. A lot of people see OFWs as our saviors and everything else. Yes, that's true and I agree to those statements, but it has a very high social cost. Kids are growing up without their mothers or fathers. In our little way, we would like to play our part in community building by instilling financial discipline in children and planting in them the seed of thought that their small business can grow up to be like the big brands that surrounds us. We hope that in our own small way, we are able to change the country one Kiddo-Preneur at a time." says Quinto Oreta of Major Homes.

Francis Oliva from PLDT SME Nation has even pledged to support the Kiddo-Preneur Summer Bazaar advocacy which runs twice a year during summer and before the Christmas season (Kiddo-preneur Christmas Bazaar) when the kids are available during their school breaks.

Dolli Bufi from Robinson's Land told the inspiring story about John Gokongwei who started out in business at a young age of 13. The business tycoon wrote a book about his life story that were given away as prizes later on during the one day bazaar. Robinson's malls supports not only concerts, celebrity personalities and their shows, but also family-oriented events like these that are not just fun but also promote certain disciplines that schools do not really push in their curriculum.

The whole crux of Kiddo-Preneur is to encourage Filipinos to start up their businesses - to become entrepreneurs. That is what we need in this country. Our GDP is fueled by OFW remittances. We pay such a high social cost for that. What we want is for this little kids to become this big businesses so that they can employ more Filipinos. So that the Filipinos have the option: will I go abroad to work or will I stay?

Some lucky kids who joined the bazaar will also be taken to a tour of the Gardenia bread factory located in Laguna so they will have a chance to see how bread is made using a fully automated process. This is just among the many opportunities that kids will be exposed in when they join this admirable event that many brands and establishments should partner with to further help promote entrepreneurship in the country. We should turn this into a bigger event and make it country-wide so that many kids will benefit form the learning experience.

Other existing partners of the event espouse the same values of investing on children for nation-building. If even a few of these children at an early age can soon become an entrepreneur that can employ 30 or 100 people, it would be a great start on their way to become big businesses in the future, and hoping otehr will foillow the same program so that our economy will equally benefit from the influx of employment opportunities brought about by these new businesses.

They will soon be coming out with the Kiddo-preneur Christmas Bazaar probably sometime this November so better encourage your kids to join so they can discover their potentials and possibilities to become the next John Gokongwei, Manny Pangilinan, Henry Sy or Lucio Tan of the business world.

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