FOUR students from North Presentation High School in Farranree will travel to Switzerland next week to represent Ireland at the European YouthStart Entrepreneurship Awards with their company ‘Know Your Buttons’, a sexual health program for primary schools to help teach consent.
Fifth-year students Jade Guiney, Shanice Pepper, Sommer Nolan and Shanice Browne have already received national recognition for their business, winning the Network For Teaching Entrepreneurship for Social Enterprise National Award in 2021, and now they hope to wow the judges at the European awards. .
Know Your Buttons is a company that created a new and improved sexual health resource for primary school age children to teach consent using a Gingerbread Kid theme. The resource helps younger children differentiate between a good touch and a bad touch, and explains the idea of consent using simple language they will understand.
Know Your Buttons will also provide other resources, such as a website, social media and helplines, as well as tips for children on how to tell a trusted adult that they feel safe around them.
Jade, Shanice, Sommer and Shanice have been developing their idea while studying for their Leaving Certificate exams with the support of their teacher, Stacey Higgins. They have attended workshops with Muire O’Farrell, a social worker at the Center for Sexual Health, and received training from ActionCOACH Ireland, a major sponsor and supporter of the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) programme.
The four students will leave Cork on Thursday to travel with their parents and Cork NFTE Program Officer Angela O’Connell to Olten in Switzerland.
The YouthStart European Entrepreneurship Awards will take place from June 2-4.
The ‘Youth Start European Entrepreneurship Award’ is awarded in the categories ‘Business Idea (Social)’ and ‘Real Market’ and ‘We Grow Together’.