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Cathay Craftz diary - 1 February

  • Newsnight
  • 1 Feb 07, 08:51 PM

cathay_203.jpgIn a scheme that hopes to encourage a generation of new young entrepreneurs, 10,000 school children were given £10 for a month to see if they could make a profit.

Welcome to the Cathay Craftz blog on the Newsnight website. Jamie Barker speaking! Everyday a different director will contribute to this blog.

Today we are delivering our very first commission to Lisa Tse at Sweet Mandarin. It’s been hectic but we’ve done it!

We are also en route to completing our prototypes for Mrs August, our principal, our deadline being tomorrow! She has requested specialised pieces for a very important dinner with members of the United Learning Trust, the people who sponsor our Academy and other academies up and down the country.

We now have a whole team of students working with us. We are up to our knees in paper!

Manchester Confidential is giving us advertising space on their website, so this should help us.

Cathay Craftz, Manchester Academy

  • Newsnight
  • 1 Feb 07, 08:41 PM

cathay_203300.jpgIn a scheme that hopes to encourage a generation of new young entrepreneurs, 10,000 school children were given £10 for a month to see if they could make a profit.

Cathay Craftz tells Newsnight how it plans to turn its pool of ten pound notes into a healthy profit...

We've got ten pounds each, one month and our challenge is to make a profit in the month! We've chosen to make origami and are selling this to staff, students and businesses.

Cathay Craftz comprises of four students from Manchester Academy; Yahui Zhang, Marcelle Tompkins, Yidan Liu and Jamie Barker. We are the directors of Cathay Craftz, and we have set up our business to take part in the Make Your Mark with a Tenner competition.

One of our directors, Yahui, had the idea for the business and the Make Your Mark Challenge was an ideal opportunity to get some funds - and some motivation! Yahui chose to bring Marcelle on board, having worked with him before in Young Enterprise and then they invited Jamie and Yidan to join them.

Our products are simple. Origami pieces made, wherever possible, from recycled paper and donations of gift-wrap from the staff and students. We've come up with a list of prices, and we've rounded up some (willing!) volunteers...

We were really lucky that we got chosen to take part in some filming for Newsnight. They came to the Academy and interviewed us all, watched our first board meeting, Stephanie the Economics editor even had school dinner with us! During the day we went up to Sweet Mandarin (a restaurant in Manchester's hip Northern Quarter) and we pitched our idea to one of the owners, Lisa Tse. Lisa was good enough to give us our first order. She wants four big mobiles to hang in the restaurant for Valentines Day - so the clock is already ticking!

Our aim is to make £500. Part of the profits will pay for staff and materials. But as well, we're trying to raise money to sponsor students from our partner school, Toli Secondary School in South Africa. At Toli it costs £86 to pay for a student to complete three years of their education. One of our teachers has visited them and since she returned we've been thinking of ways to raise money for the students there.

Just think, our month-long challenge could make a real difference to the futures of students all the way in South Africa!

Thursday, 1 February, 2007

  • Newsnight
  • 1 Feb 07, 05:15 PM

blair_203.jpgNews that Tony Blair has again been questioned by detectives in the cash for honours investigation suggests to many in Westminster that we are already in the twilight of the Blair era. We’ll be considering the enormous political fall-out.

Also: BAE-Saudi royal family financial links claims; and Gen Richards' battle against the Taleban.

Comment on Thursday’s programme here.

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