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Recruits Take on Farmers’ Market Challenge

Budding young entrepreneurs taking part in an Apprentice-style competition in Renfrewshire took on a Farmers’ Market challenge this weekend.

Five teams of teenagers ran competing stalls at the Farmers’ Market in County Square on Saturday 10 July.

The team with the highest takings at the end of the day won the challenge, set by Paisley Vision Board.

The 28 young people, all fifth and sixth year pupils from Renfrewshire schools, are all taking part in The Recruit, a project run by Renfrewshire Council in partnership with local businesses and organisations over the summer.

The Recruit aims to give young people practical experience and advice on starting a career in business. The young person named as The Recruit will win an £18,000 a year job.

Renfrewshire Council Leader and Chair of Paisley Vision Board Derek Mackay, said: “The Recruit is designed to give young people real-life experience of working in business. The farmers’ market challenge will see them having to compete with each other and other stallholders to sell their produce and make money.

“Each team has to choose what products they think will sell best at the farmers’ market. They will have to get their early to set up their stall and the team with the highest takings will win.”

To add an extra twist to the challenge the stalls needed to sell Fairtrade products.

Councillor Brian Lawson, chair of the Renfrewshire Fairtrade Steering Group, went along to see how the teams got along.

Cllr Lawson said: “This is a great project and I’m delighted that it is also being used to further promote Fairtrade in Renfrewshire. Not only did customers at the farmers’ market get to opportunity to buy Fairtrade, it was also a chance to spread the Fairtrade message to the young people themselves as they were monitored on how well they promoted Fairtrade generally as well. They all did an excellent job and every stall was practically sold out.”

There will be seven business challenges in total throughout The Recruit as well as presentations and Q&A sessions with some of Scotland’s top entrepreneurs.

Participants will also cover courses in customer care, stress management, presentation skills, assessment centre and interview skills as well as raising funds for charity.

The winners of The Recruit will be those who show the most potential and display the key skills business bosses look for – leadership, communication, innovation, problem solving and determination to succeed.

The winners will be revealed at a black tie finale event on Thursday 19th August.

The Recruit Inverclyde has successfully helped 27 young people go into employment or further education in the last three years.

www.renfrewshire.gov.uk