Parents can always use some help teaching kids the value of hard work or other essential life skills. That's why Lemonade Day was started -- to add a hands-on approach to the topic.
Julie Eberly, president of Lemonade Day and a mother of four, knows that parents want nothing more than to ensure their children's success. She says, "We wanted to make learning about entrepreneurship fun and experiential, and what's more easy to understand than a lemonade stand?"
Although, nationally, Lemonade Day 2013 is targeted for the first Sunday in May, the event can be held on different dates in individual cities that choose to participate. Modesto was part of the event last year, but held it on May 19. Those interested in joining can register at http://lemonadeday.org.
Each interested child in a participating community gets a free kit including 14 lessons, starting with goal setting that will help them create their stand. Then they put together a business plan with the help of a mentor, Eberly explains.
"We ask the kids to do three things with their money: spend a little, save a little, and share a little. That's where they see the rewards of their hard work."
Lemonade Day has partnered with Google, which will provide tools and technology to help Lemonade Day fulfill its mission.
"Google began as a startup in a garage, and we ourselves are a company full of entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial spirit; we really want to empower the next generation of startups to be successful. Lemonade Day is having a measurable impact on youth across America and we're excited to team up to help train these youth to be current and future entrepreneurial leaders," said Mary Grove, director of Google for Entrepreneurs.
In launching the partnership, the two organizations announced a "Million Mentor Challenge" because 1 million new entrepreneurs need 1 million mentors.
A mentor can be a teacher, a community leader, a parent, or anyone who will help guide the child to success. Lemonade Day is a chance to allow a child to create and implement their own business plan; they need to find an investor, determine a profitable selling point and put their plan into action.
"We want our kids to be equipped, we want them to be empowered and to feel good about their futures, and this is the best thing that I've seen that ensures they're going to grasp that understanding in a fun way," Eberly says.
The program was started in Houston in 2007 as part of Prepared 4 Life, a not-for-profit organization that works with after-school programs to inspire children to succeed. Lemonade Day added a hands-on approach that kids could take responsibility for. The program has expanded and involves over 35 cities and 160,000 kids across the country.