Link Your Purpose (LYP)

Link Your Purpose (LYP)

Mandeville, JamaicaMandeville, Jamaica
Year Founded:
2014
Organization type: 
hybrid
Project Stage:
Idea
Budget: 
$10,000 - $50,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Link Your Purpose (LYP) is an innovative social enterprise. It is the first of its kind, using cutting-edge technology and new testing methods that are fun and accessible to help young people in Jamaica to identify and fulfil their career goals. LYP hopes to revolutionize career services in schools.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if every child knew what they wanted to do after leaving high school and had equal opportunity to achieve their career goals?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

The problem that the project is addressing is that the career services that is offered in schools does not sufficiently help students to identify their career goals nor provide meaningful guidance to help them to achieve these goals. This later results in low enrollment levels in Colleges and Universities or over-subscription in various programmes which leads to unemployment in an already very competitive job market.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

LYP has been created to allow the high number of high school students in Jamaica who have completed their studies but still have no idea what they want to do with their lives identify and fulfill their career goals through an online platform where young people can take fun and interactive psychometric tests that will match their skills, interests, passions and expertise to the most suitable career options. The platform will recommend the subjects they should take in high school to achieve their personal career goals and then direct them to Universities, Colleges or Vocational Institutions that offer courses in their selected fields and direct them to youth opportunities such as scholarships, fellowships, conferences, workshops and jobs.

Awards

Gifted Citizen Prize 2015, semi-finalist; The DO School Seeds Award Semi-finalist 2015; UN-Habitat/Eminus Academy Social Enterprise Seeds Award Winner 2014
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Sarah recently graduated from High School with eight subjects. She has no idea what she wants to do as a career and is having difficulties applying to Colleges and Universities. Sarah enjoys drawing and has a natural knack for designing and construction. After meeting a career mentor from Link Your Purpose, Sarah learnt about the numerous career options that she can choose from, related to her passion. She can become an Architect, Designer or even a Contractor. Sarah is introduced to the Link Your Purpose online platform. After entering her details the platform directs her to Universities and Colleges that offers programmes in these fields. She can now complete and submit her College Applications and even apply for scholarships!

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

The Link Your Purpose online platform is on the verge of being launched and therefore has not created significant impact to date, however the NGO Young Women/Men of Purpose which is the parent organization for LYP has been offering career development services to youth in Jamaica face to face and has impacted over 3000 students to date, helping them to identify their purpose and work on fulfilling their dreams. Link Your Purpose (LYP) will create: •60% increase in career awareness among High School students by June 2016 •Reduction in the local unemployment rate among youth which is currently 42% in Jamaica! •50% increase in awareness among High School students in of local and global opportunities for youth The project will help approximately 500,000 students in Jamaica identify and achieve their career goals by 2018.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

A partnership will be created with the Ministry of Education to place the Link Your Purpose online application on the Tablets of all High School students in the Government's "Tablets in Schools" Project, to help students with career development. After the project has been scaled nationally, it will be extended and scaled across the Region of the Caribbean as other Caribbean countries face similar problems as those faced by youth in Jamaica. Within five years we hope to scale the project globally seeing it is an online platform to help youth globally who face similar challenges.
Sustainability

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Due to the Social Enterprise nature of the project, it will generate revenue from basic and premium subscriptions from users and advertisements from colleges and universities. More importantly, the application will be licensed to the government through the Ministry of Education, to place on the tablets of all high school students in their ‘Tablets in Schools’ Project. This will allow us to reach and even greater market in a shorter time frame.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Currently in Jamaica Career Services is a part of the school curriculum, however students have a collective session with the career counselor once per month and once per year some schools host a Career Expo. This method has proved ineffective to help students identify and achieve their career goals as students must select 8 subjects that they will take in high school and if they don't know what they want to become they will randomly select subjects. This will prevent them from getting into the programme of choice later when they apply for University. LYP will offer personalized career service
Team

Founding Story

Several years while teaching a group of young adults in Jamaica I realized that many of them had never discussed their career goals with anyone. At that moment I realized that I also have never had a career advisor or a platform to help me. This is why I was very inspired to help young people in my community to identify what they wanted to become and gave them information about how to do it, by starting the NGO Young Women/Men of Purpose (YWOP/YMOP). Today, I want to help more young people, not only face-to-face within my community, but across the entire Jamaica using technology and that is why I created the Link Your Purpose online platform to help young people achieve their career goals.

Team

Link your purpose currently has seven team members who will work to ensure the successful development and implementation of the platform and application. • Founder; Business Development (Full-time) - Lanisia Rhoden is a social entrepreneur and a youth and community development specialist. She has an MSc in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship and as team lead is responsible for Business Development. She is the founder of the NGO Young Women/Men of Purpose. • Software/Web Developer (Contract) - HiveApps - Highly reputable software team that has achieved remarkable success designing software for numerous corporate companies in Jamaica. • System Administrator/ E-learning Expert (Part-time) - Seymour has a Diploma in Computer Studies and is currently pursuing the B.Ed. He is currently a Regional Training Officer with eLearning Jamaica and is certified in Technology Integration. He will provide insight on eLearning approaches relevant to the project. • Psychometrician (Part-time) - Eva is a social work leader and educator with over fifteen years of experience in the field of personal development. She brings to the team her skills of planning, implementation and management for the oversight of psychometric components. • Marketing/ Education Specialist (Part-time) - Ruth is an educator by profession and is very passionate about youth and community development and philanthropy. • Social Media Expert (Part-time) - Charlene is a Senior Instructor with the National Training Agency of Jamaica, HEART Trust/NTA. Very creative and artistic individual and is currently the Graphic Consultant for YWOP/YMOP. • Research Analyst (Full-time) - Lisa is currently completing her Masters in Governance and Public Administration. Has expertise in Business Development, Research and NGO Management. Co-Founder A Brighter Day Foundation.
Background
Please confirm how you heard about the Unilever Awards:

From my DO School Coach

Please confirm your role in the initiative (eg Founder/co-Founder) and your organisational title:

Founder

Which of the 8 UN Global Goals (Sustainable Development Goals) pre-selected for this competition does your solution relate most closely to? [select all that apply]

No Poverty, Decent Work and Economic Growth.

Leadership and the Unilever Awards
Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.

Lanisia Rhoden started her first business Le Monde Concessionaire and Catering Services Limited in 2009 and is the CEO and Managing Director of the company. Committed to community and youth development, Lanisia also founded the Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) Young Women/Men of Purpose (YWOP/YMOP), which provides career mentorship and guidance, personal development training; and entrepreneurship and business development services to youths in Manchester in the same year.
Lanisia has achieved remarkable success in her two main ventures. Her catering company has provided food & beverage services for numerous corporate companies in Jamaica, including the National Housing Trust (NHT) and the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) for as many as 1000 persons. Her NGO, YWOP/YMOP has received high praises for its Youth Entrepreneurship Project (YEP) which received funding of USD$19,000 from the UN-Habitat Urban Youth Fund, to train approximately 50 young entrepreneurs in Manchester, 14 of whom received Business Development Grants of USD$500 each to further develop their businesses.
Not only is Lanisia a practicing entrepreneur, but she has pursued studies internationally in Innovation Management and Entrepreneurship at the University of Manchester, UK as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar (2012 – 2013). She also holds a BSc in Food Service Management from the University of Technology, Jamaica and is currently one of nineteen Fellows from across the world, and the first Jamaican, of The DO School, Germany. She is very passionate about sharing her knowledge and expertise with other young people by serving as a part-time instructor with the HEART Trust/NTA and more recently became a Business Advisor for the Business Development and Workforce Solutions Department of the Trust.
Lanisia has received several awards for entrepreneurship, leadership and community development including: the Southwest TVET Institute’s Women in Business Award 2014, the Commonwealth Youth Award for Excellence in Development Work 2013 in London as a Regional finalist for the Caribbean and Canada region and the Governor General of Jamaica Award for Youth Leadership and Community Development for the Parish of Manchester, Jamaica in 2011.
Lanisia now considers herself a Social Entrepreneur as she is now working on her newest venture Link Your Purpose (LYP), which is a technology social enterprise that she hopes will help Jamaican students with career development and make the NGO YWOP/YMOP sustainable.

Beyond your existing team, who else are you working with to achieve your objectives, eg partners, advisors, mentors?

As a Fellow of The DO School, Germany, Packaging Challenge 2015, I am currently working my Venture Coach Romy Kraemer who have been providing guidance, advise and connecting me with the right persons throughout the implementation phase of my project.
The additional partners that I hope to work with are:
• Social Investor form the UK who is interested in investing once the first prototype has been completed.
• High school and university students and youth at risk who are unemployed these are the main beneficiaries and users of the product and services being offered by the venture.
• Government, the Ministry of Education partnership will be established to install application on the tablets of the high school students within the “Tablets in Schools Project”. The Government will be approached to license the career services application/software for it be used as part of the curriculum for career education.
• Digicel, major Telecommunications Company collaboration or partnership will be created to use their system to collect subscription payment from each local user of the mobile application.
• Colleges, Universities other Institutions and Companies these stakeholders will be approached to advertise their programmes, products/services and job offerings on the platform.