Haringey Adult Learning Service driving support for entrepreneurship


Anthony Charles had a quick chat with Head of Service for Haringey Adult Learning Service, Simon Beer about their Global Entrepreneurship Make It Happen event.

Where did the idea come from for the make it happen promotion?

At the beginning of training we develop a learning plan with our learners and as part of this we ask them ‘what are their life goals?’  Many responded that they would like to have a business of their own.   So in response to this we saw the opportunity to enable our learning support team to run a flagship event to support our learners who were thinking of setting up their own business, needed business support or needing some enterprise help.

Simon Beer - Haringey Adult Learning Service

Simon Beer – Head of Service for Haringey Adult Learning Service

We were contacted by Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) for a partnership deal to run an event during the week.  We could have run an event like this at any time of the year but we saw an opportunity to gain national exposure during this week of events.

How will the event help your delegates?

It will provide them with amazing opportunities; for instance; having Metro Bank telling our learners how to access finance when they want to set up their business in the future, or having Birbeck College come in and instruct our learners that if they want to study and need a student loan to do it, then this is how it all works; you don’t pay it back until you are earning a certain level etc…

So this is all in response to what your learners what; how did you choose the businesses and organisations that would be involved?

Sean McIvor - Haringey Adult Learning Service

Sean McIvor – Haringey Adult Learning Service

I have a really good colleague called Sean McIvor who is one of our learning support team, his specialism is working with employers and enterprise support services and he is very well connected in the borough.  So he found it very easy to attract the right businesses and organisations to support this event; in fact we had to turn a lot of businesses away because of the size of the room.  We’ve even had contact from a business college in Holland who want to send some exchange students over for the event, so next year it will be much bigger.

Brilliant; so what are the plans for a follow up? What comes next in ongoing support for learners?

Good question; we’ll be keeping a record of all learners who attended, we will be reviewing the event with our exhibiting partners and learners who attended, asking them what they would like to see in our future programs and events.

So it sounds as if the Make it happen event has really come from speaking to learners; finding out what they want; then going back to the exhibitors and learners again to plan your next phase?

Yes we see this as a flagship kick to this side of our job of supporting learners. We already have plans for the ongoing workshops to support our learners in various areas such as social media, but our ongoing consultation will really pave the way to fully support our learners.




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