CHEK Upside: Kidovate young entrepreneur event readying for return


For the first time since 2019, Victoria’s youngest aspiring business owners will have their chance to shine.

Kidovate is a free entrepreneurship initiative put on by UVic’s Gustavson School of Business. Middle school and high school students from across Victoria develop their own products and then sell them at a public market.

“In the business school we thought this would be a great way to connect with the community, to empower kids and teach them a little about entrepreneurship,” says UVic professor and Kidovate creator Brock Smith.

“We view entrepreneurship as a life skill, learning how to create value and figuring out who your customer is going to be.”

For the university, the event offers the chance to showcase and nurture the next generation of business students.

“The more experience young people have in entrepreneurship the more comfortable they’re going to be at doing that,” says Smith.

“Whether they end up as entrepreneurs doesn’t really matter, it’s a life skill [and] we hope that some of them will come our way in terms of entrepreneurship.”

“It’s exciting because I can actually show other people other than my household and my friends about creating a business,” says Kidovate participant Andrea Steeves.

This year’s Kidovate market will feature over 60 kids showing off a wide variety of different business ventures.

“They’re selling things from bath bombs and soaps to woodwork, carving projects, paintings, cookbooks, jewellery, all kinds of stuff,” says Smith.

“It’s really amazing.”

The 2022 Kidovate market runs Saturday, April 9 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Bay Centre in downtown Victoria.

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Cole SorensonCole Sorenson

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