Local London > News > Redbridge

Redbridge Pupils Impress at Social Enterprise Dragons’ Den Event

The Local London Careers Hub proudly partner with Redbridge Connexions Team and Social Enterprise Academy to develop a Social Enterprise Schools project in Redbridge.

On 7 May 2024, five schools across Redbridge pitched their impressive social enterprise ideas to an expert panel at the Social Enterprise Schools: Dragons’ Den competition at Redbridge Town Hall in Ilford.

The panel of ‘dragons’ included Colin Stewart from London Borough of Redbridge, Sarah Murray from Local London, Griff Tanner from Cirrus Logic, and Sofia Paci from BGF.

Friendly Dragons smiling and enjoying presentations: Colin Stewart from London Borough of Redbridge, Sarah Murray from Local London, Griff Tanner from Cirrus Logic, and Sofia Paci from BGF

The Dragons’ Den event provided an opportunity for pupils to gain professional advice on their social enterprise business ideas. The young entrepreneurs honed their public speaking skills and the dragons gained valuable insights into the issues that matter most to the next generation. Social enterprise ideas pitched on the day included multiple upcycling schemes; hand-made sensory boxes; a mental health scheme for women and girls; an anti-littering social enterprise; and a healthy eating business tackling poor nutrition.

The overall winners of the Dragons’ Den were Fresh Fusion at Isaac Newton Academy receiving £100. Mayfield School were recognised for the Best Environmental Enterprise, and Little Heath School for Best Product.

Prize winning teams from Issac Newton Academy, Mayfield School and Little Heath School.

Pupils are running their social enterprises as part of the Social Enterprise Schools programme, delivered by the Social Enterprise Academy, which empowers young people to affect social change in their communities, while developing key core employability and entrepreneurial skills for the future.

Sarah Murray, Director of Local London said:

“I’m out! Out of words to say how brilliant the students’ ideas and presentations were. I hope that they all found this as exciting and fun as we did. Redbridge clearly has many talented budding social entrepreneurs. Thank you to our partners at Redbridge Connexions Team, Social Enterprise Academy, and the team at Local London Careers Hub for putting on this innovative event.”

Colin Stewart, Director of Education and Inclusion, London Borough of Redbridge said:

“The quality of the pitches was so impressive. It wasn’t just a collection of ideas – instead pupils had thought about real life issues and ways in which they could help solve the problems. Every school’s pitch had creativity and innovation at its core – as judges we were blown away by how good they were.” 

Maya Wenzel, Delivery Lead (England) at the Social Enterprise Academy said:

“One of my favourite parts of my job is being able to see the next generation of social entrepreneurs in action! I was blown away by the calibre of the initiatives presented at the Redbridge Dragons’ Dens – they all shared creative and thoughtful responses to local social and environmental issues and have a great future ahead of them.”

Congratulations to all the students and schools who presented at the Social Enterprise Schools ‘Dragons’ Den’ competition:

  • Oaks Park School
  • Little Heath School
  • Isaac Newton Academy
  • Mayfield School
  • Ilford County High School

Group shot of students who took part with teachers in front of a stage.

Find out more

⇒ For more information on how to get involved in the Social Enterprise Schools programme, please visit: www.socialenterprise.academy/social-enterprise-schools-england

⇒ Redbridge Connexions: www.redbridge.gov.uk/young-people/connexions

The Local London Careers Hub is funded through the Careers and Enterprise Company and Mayor of London.

⇒ Discover more news from our Careers Hub team.


View news and resources, by tag:

Further reading

  1. Previous Half of young Londoners want a “green” career
  2. Next Ekosgen appointed to lead East London transport transformation research