During what has been a very busy half term, Picnic Liverpool, a vegan friendly fast food service, visited LEEP for one of our Meet the Professional sessions. They discussed how they grew their business from their own kitchen and used social media as their only form of advertisement.
Colleagues from Picnic related their business model to ‘The Prince’s Trust’ programme of study that incorporates “Healthy Lifestyles”. This contextualises class room learning for our students and brings their curriculum to life.
LEEP students sampled some of Picnic’s food and made their famous falafels. It was a pleasure to see them fully immersed in the session and taking great pride in their work.
The feedback from Picnic and our students was extremely positive so much so that LEEP students have asked if we can create future opportunities for them to work with Picnic again and try creating more options from their menu.

We also facilitated a visit from Owen Drew, a luxury candle company, and students at LEEP were fortunate to have the opportunity to meet with their company director, Drew, and listen to how he got started. He showcased a range of their luxury products and discussed the skills and attributes needed to become a successful business.
LEEP students were surprised to hear that he began by creating candles in his own kitchen with a £40 investment but now has a customer base across the UK, and has recently broken into the US market with his products retailing as far as Los Angeles.
Drew was very candid in his discussion, explaining the struggles, highs and lows of running your own business.
As part of our partnership with Owen Drew, we will be starting a project in January 2020 which coincides with The Prince’s Trust “Enterprise” module. This will allow our students to visit Owen Drew HQ and see the production line, create, design and brand their own candle. Students will then use this experience to apply for The Prince’s Trust Awards, which takes place at the London Palladium in April 2021.

Our busy half term also included LEEP students joining forces with MY BNK – Money Twist. This is a highly interactive financial education programme covering practical and relevant everyday financial matters. These sessions are designed to get young people thinking and caring about their finances whilst also supporting the delivery of the “Money Management” module within our curriculum.
It was wonderful to see students contributing their own views and critically analysing various financial problems that young people and adults face whilst also considering their own financial futures.
This proved to be yet another valuable experience for LEEP students and we will be working with MY BNK again.

Finally, we hosted Dean Garnett, Director of Aspire Academy (MMA), who ran a very successful Meet the Professional Session, for students at LEEP. Dean discussed his journey in becoming a professional athlete, emphasising the importance of resiliency, determination and self-discipline. He also discussed building his own business and opening his MMA academy. Dean also spoke to our students about post 16 opportunities at Aspire Academy and a number of our students have already expressed an interest so watch this space.

In addition, Dean was accompanied by one of his current sixth form students who supported him in the delivery of a practical session. LEEP students approached the session with excitement and enthusiasm, it was a pleasure to see them enjoying themselves.

We will continue to work closely with Aspire Academy and will soon welcome one of their sixth form students to deliver a weekly session to LEEP students.