A group of senior students at West London Community College have recently undertaken their biggest challenge yet – running their own market stall in The Pavilion’s shopping centre in Uxbridge, all in aid of Anna Kennedy Online.
Anna approached the staff at the college at the beginning of the year with an offer we couldn’t refuse.The charity would pay for the stall on a bi-weekly basis if we assembled a team of students to produce products and the manpower to work behind the counter.
The students were delighted to have the opportunity to gain invaluable work experience, not to mention safe-exposure to the community.
We opened the stall selling waffles with delicious toppings but quickly realised it wasn’t working so after a brainstorming session, followed by extensive market research, the students decided they would try homemade jams and chutneys.
I’m delighted to announce that this latest line of produce has developed a following of loyal customers and is seemingly flying off the stall.
What started as a one-day-a-week session has now monopolised their timetable to become their major focus. Since opening the students have taken more and more ownership of their Social Enterprise and are now responsible for the finances, monitoring our ever decreasing stock levels, producing more stock, designing advertising artwork, assessing profit margins and inventing new and exciting products.
Our head designer, Ross Lee, has said that the stall has “given me the opportunity to use my artistic talents while designing the posters”.
Whereas sales assistant and chef, Damien Bardou said “the Social Enterprise sessions have improved my confidence and interaction skills with my fellow team members and the public”.
There is no doubting that the hard work and enthusiasm the students give to the session is an incredible advert for the college. An effort the staff team at WLCC are extremely proud of.
Jamie Wilson, Senior Vocational Training Officer
West London Community College