Big names turn out for Prince's Trust bash

princestrust.JPGHRH The Prince of Wales, Chancellor Alistair Darling, BERR chief Baroness Shriti Vadera, Dragons Debra Meaden and James Caan, Cobra Beer boss Lord Karan Bilimoria, Carphone Warehouse’ s Charles Dunstone, Travelex founder Lloyd Dorfman and lots of other business bigwigs turned out yesterday to celebrate the 25th anniversary of The Prince’s Trust Business Programme.It’s tempting to say their presence tells you all you need to know about the impact The Prince’s Trust continues to have. Except it doesn’t.Its backers, ambassadors and mentors are crucial, but it’s the success of the 70,000 disadvantaged young people the Trust has helped since 1983 that tells the real story.If you’ve received Prince’s Trust backing, within a year, you’re twice as likely to be self employed or four times less likely to be unemployed. Businesses supported by the Trust on average turnover three times more than those that aren’t, while each individual on average contributes £3,000 to the Exchequer, equating to £2 return on every £1 invested.It’s not all about stats, either. Gina Moffatt is an ex-offender who's rebuilt her life after starting her florists business Blooming Scent with the help of The Prince’s Trust and mentoring sessions from James Caan. Her short speech yesterday spoke volumes:“I was sentenced to six years in prison and didn’t know where my life was going, but with the help of The Prince’s Trust I’m here now running my own business. Instead of being unemployable and unable to lift my head with shame I can now look you and my family in the eyes because of what I’ve achieved through business.”Yesterday wasn’t just about celebrating achievements, though. Research commissioned by the Trust shows there's a greater need for its work than ever before.Only 6% of 16 to 30-year-olds start businesses despite two in five admitting they’d like to. Just 8% consider the UK as a global leader for enterprise, while two thirds believe only well-off people can afford to start a business and that today’s entrepreneurs are most likely to be white, middle-class, middle-aged men.That’s pretty damning and very scary. The government announced yesterday it’ll provide £1m of funding over three years for the Prince’s Trust only to come under fire for no longer matching the investment it raises from the private sector pound-for-pound as was the case under the Tories.If it’s looking to get business back-on-side and really committed to its pledge to create a globally competitive enterprise culture, then surely that’d be money well spent? £2 back for every £1 spent, sounds like a bargain!

We use cookies to create the most secure and effective website possible for our customers. Full details can be found here