Isaac Newton said, “We build too many walls and not enough bridges”. Lucky for us, the freethinkers and innovators of the world help break down those walls with their inquisitive minds and a zest for exploration. Bridges through knowledge have fueled humanities progress; from understanding the universe, to innovative technology that helps clean our water; from software that helps save the lives of workers, to ideas that seem impossible until they are made possible through support and investment.
Ideas don’t have to be as huge as the Hubble to be worthy; they can be useful (paperclip), fun (slingshot), or seemingly insignificant, (bobby pin) until you don’t have one.
The innovators of these ideas, both large and small, can develop even better ones, both small and large… And it all begins with education and support.
Okanagan education authorities recognized the importance of supporting and encouraging young entrepreneurs, and partnered to establish, The Young Entrepreneur ‘Dragon’s Den’ Competition, where qualifying contestants win the opportunity to pitch their idea to a group of investors.
Last year’s ‘Dragon’s Den’ were attendees at Metabridge. The Metabridge founder was so impressed by the winning students that he invited them up on stage to give a last minute, impromptu pitch. The students blew the minds of VCs, Investors and Silicon Valley VIPs with their professionalism and entrepreneurial ideas.
Basecamp Cards, (a great name and always a good sign) was the winning idea of Maya Gay, who partnered with her friend, Rachel Birrell, to develop a pack of playing cards specifically designed to take camping. The intention of the cards is to encourage fun conversation with a deck of fun questions. The young entrepreneur’s pitch impressed the panel of Metabridge judges, and Maya went on to develop her business with her brother. The Basecamp Card Company has now been accepted into the Hootsuite’s Next Big Thing program.
"Metabridge offered our company an invaluable opportunity to network with the most influential business people in North America and "pitch" our company in a real world setting. Our experience there led us to a spot in the next big thing foundation through the connections we made and an increased confidence in our pitching skills." Maya Gay.
This year, Enactus OC, who support SD23 and the Dragon’s Den’ participants, is partnering with Metabridge and volunteering on-site support. Enactus, a non-profit student run organization, fosters entrepreneurial programs that contribute to the development of small business economies, and improve the quality of life within communities.
SD23 is partnering up with Metabridge to host a young entrepreneurs mentoring workshop at the Metabridge for Schools event on Wednesday 8th June. Metabridge investors hosting the workshop will be on hand to help the next generation of entrepreneurs develop their business and find investors. Any questions should be directed to Patti.Ostrikoff@sd23.bc.ca
The world is full of entrepreneurs, freethinkers and innovators, imagining ways to improve life, developing dreams into tools and technologies, and finding ways to make it all happen.
We just need to keep building bridges.