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Lisa Heydlauff wants youth to become entrepreneurs

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Lisa Heydlauff came from the UK two decades ago and fell so in love with India that she decided to stay back. Since then, the multi-award-winning educator has spent many years innovating tools for young Indians, whether it’s offline through graphic novels in 1,000 government secondary schools in Bihar, or online through the newly launched Map of Me or on TV.
The Children’s Scrappy News Service and School TV are compelling narratives about what young people can do to problem-solve for everyone using their design-thinking entrepreneurial skills toolbox. Play City is designed to enable the children of Mumbai, Maharashtra to make Mumbai a place to play and take on Climate Change.
Lisa is CEO of Going to School, a creative not-for-profit education trust that makes design-driven stories to teach children 21st Century entrepreneurial skills at school, online and on national television. A TED Fellow; Ashoka Fellow; Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum, she believes in the power of youngsters to change the world. Her latest youth innovation Map of Me wants to produce the next generation of Indian entrepreneurs. Launched in Delhi some weeks ago and recently in Kolkata and Bengaluru, Map of Me (MOM) is addressing tomorrow’s entrepreneurs in the lockdown, and beyond.
Excerpts from an exclusive video interaction with the accomplished educator, Lisa Heydlauff.

1. Tell us briefly about your latest initiative for youngsters.

Map of Me, or as I like to call it MOM, covers what young people want to know about in the city from Street Food to Street Art and has a fierce commitment to digging deep and understanding how young entrepreneurs in the city are problem-solving for everyone. There are over 100 stories on the channel featuring young sustainable entrepreneurs, most of whom are young women.

MOM is for young people, so it’s about skills and how to be an entrepreneur in the city, how to get people together around your idea, how to start something new that is for-profit, creates jobs and helps a lot of people.

2. Did the lockdown prove to be an unexpected blessing for MOM?

Understandably young people are feeling low in lockdown, MOM hopes to cheer young people up with compelling stories to be able to learn skills and do new things. It is online, free, new content every day and you can even win cool stuff if you answer the quizzes correctly – bicycles, helmets and backpacks to cycle to school or work.

3. What kind of audience are these videos for?

MOM has two audiences young people age 18-23 who have mobile phones and commute to work by public transport, and it’s for young people in Grade 11 and 12 to explore our 26 steps to make a new school-to-work life plan.

4. Why such a young target group? Don’t older millennials need skilling?

If you are between the age group of 16-18 and what to explore your school-to-work life plan or if there is a problem you want to solve, you can go follow Map of Me’s 26 steps and create a business/ entrepreneurial online bullet journal for yourself. 26 steps is a series of easy steps to guide young people through the process of thinking of a problem and finding a solution. At the end of the exercise, the path to the goal is magically unfurled in your own bullet journal. The information you found is saved, designed and logged for you to understand the plan you’re making.

5. How will the initiative reach youngsters from low-income backgrounds?

While the initiative is currently online because of the lockdown, it will be reaching schools once they reopen, when our volunteers and Going to School teams take the 26 steps online platform to young people in Government schools, bringing both the technology and mentoring aspect of being able to ask someone with a cool career how they did what they do.