JA Europe and the Citi Foundation celebrate 30-year partnership anniversary with new $1.2 million grant

The partnership will continue to support young people across Europe to develop employability skills and entrepreneurial mind-sets through the Citi Foundation’s Pathways to Progress initiative.

JA Europe and the Citi Foundation are celebrating 30 years of partnership with the renewal of a grant to work together in 19 European countries across Europe. Early this year, the Citi Foundation expanded their Pathways to Progress initiative globally with a $100million commitment to support 500,000 young people over the next three years to become career ready. The $1.2million grant from the Citi Foundation to JA Europe will equip secondary school students with employability skills and entrepreneurship mind-sets through the Junior Achievement’s Company Programme.

In addition to the direct youth impact, $300,000 of the grant will be allocated to a strategic project to support the establishment of the JA Europe’s Entrepreneurship Education Network (EE-HUBs) in six Central Eastern European countries (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania and Turkey). The first Entrepreneurship Education Summit is due to take place on July 11-12 in Brussels and will see His Majesty King Philippe of the Belgians, EU representatives, NGOs, Citi and many other companies convene to discuss the future entrepreneurship education of Europe’s youth.

“The Citi Foundation is taking a major leap forward for entrepreneurship education in these 6 countries. A solid EE strategy is critical to developing the skills and knowledge for job creation and fast-changing labour markets. This partnership will bring education and business communities, as well as government and policy experts closer together. It’s one of the best and most sustainable moves we can make to support young people.”says Caroline Jenner, CEO for JA Europe.

The Citi Foundation was among the first JA Europe partner to focus their support on disadvantaged students. Through the Citi Foundation’s “More than Philanthropy” approach, the partnership has engaged Citi employees as volunteer mentors and Company Programme judges. During the academic year 2016-17 almost 45,000 young people benefited from the programme alongside over 200 Citi employees who volunteered to improve European youth entrepreneurship education.

“Our partnership with JA Europe is a critical part of the Citi Foundation’s new $100million Pathways to Progress initiative. The Foundation’s recent Pathways to Progress research showed that the entrepreneurial spirit is strong amongst young people around the world, with seven in ten (69%) dreaming of starting their own business. The Citi Foundation is therefore committed to supporting young people to understand what it takes to start and run their own company, and the importance of entrepreneurial thinking, helping better prepare them for the world of work. In addition, the establishment of 6 EE-Hubs will enable best practice and know-how to be shared among NGOs, governments and companies positively benefiting more youth than ever before.”says Rachael Barber, Head of Community Development, EMEA, Citi.