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Standard Chartered launches employability programme in Ireland to support young people impacted by COVID-19

on 24 Mar 2021

24 March 2021, Dublin, Ireland – Today, Standard Chartered announces the launch of Uplifting Youth in Ireland, a community programme designed to support students in higher education impacted by the economic and social fall-out of the global coronavirus pandemic.

Delivered by NGO Enactus[1], Uplifting Youth, aims to deliver experiential learning to disadvantaged young people to develop idea generation, project management, presentation, communication and finance management skills.

Uplifting Youth will see 50 entrepreneurial students aged 18-25 mentored and supported to create and implement social entrepreneurial projects. The projects will enable 1,000 disadvantaged youth in Ireland, aged between 16 and 25 years, to enhance their employability and entrepreneurial skills. Participants will learn the fundamentals of running a business and tasked with developing a business aligned to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals[2]. Simultaneously, the cohort will develop a greater understanding of the complexities of societal issues.

The programme is available to students attending one of Enactus’ Irish network of universities. Pupils register their interest by outlining how their social entrepreneurial solutions will positively affect young people whose employment and personal development opportunities have been limited by Covid-19.

Uplifting Youth will run until December 2021. A wide variety of support will be provided by the Enactus staff team and by volunteer employees, fully trained by Enactus, from Standard Chartered’s Aviation Finance team, based in Dublin and Limerick. Support includes targeted training and mentoring as well as seed funding. 

This initiative comes at a crucial time in Ireland when job losses are high in younger and lower-income groups. Figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO)[3] showed youth unemployment levels reaching 56.4% in January 2021 for those aged 15 to 24 years. The coronavirus pandemic and national lockdown have disrupted schooling, face-to-face interaction and exaggerated pre-existing inequalities in society. Furthermore, the negative effects on wellbeing and mental health have been more apparent among those from disadvantaged backgrounds, as well as younger adults.

Kieran Corr, Global Head of Aviation Finance at Standard Chartered, said: “We are incredibly proud to launch Uplifting Youth and support young people in our local communities who have been some of those hardest hit by the economic and social impact of Covid-19.

“By involving our employees through volunteering, we have a real opportunity to inspire, encourage and share our knowledge and expertise with these students to help equip them with skills for the future and to thrive. The team here cannot wait to get started.”

Laura Dennehy, Enactus Ireland Country Manager, said “Our team at Enactus Ireland is delighted to work with the Standard Chartered Bank. We are very much looking forward to working with passionate and innovate students all around Ireland, and creating valuable sustainable impact, through this exciting new programme.”

This announcement is another example of Standard Chartered’s Here for good brand promise and commitment to supporting its communities as the coronavirus pandemic continues.  In 2020, Standard Chartered in Ireland donated around USD 100,000 to a direct Personal Protective Equipment procurement initiative organised by industry body Aircraft Leasing Ireland (ALI) for the Irish Health Service, ALONE, who support the elderly, and AWARE, a mental health charity. An additional USD 50,000 has also been shared between the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC) and the Irish Cancer Society to support their Covid-19 response work[4].

Uplifting Youth is part of Futuremakers by Standard Chartered, our global[5] initiative to tackle economic inequality. It is funded by the Standard Chartered Foundation, the lead delivery partner for Futuremakers.

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For further information please contact:

Claire Newell

Senior Communications Manager, Europe

Standard Chartered

Tel: +44 (0)207 885 8857


Aideen Ginnell


Cicero Group (on behalf of Enactus)

Tel: +353 87 761 2832


Note to Editors


Enactus is the world’s largest experiential learning platform dedicated to creating a better world while developing the next generation of entrepreneurial leaders and social innovators. The Enactus network of global business, academic and student leaders are unified by our vision—to create a better, more sustainable world.  Website:

Standard Chartered Foundation

The Standard Chartered Foundation (SCF) is a charitable organisation that tackles inequality by promoting greater economic inclusion for disadvantaged young people, particularly girls and people with visual impairments, through programmes focused on education, employability, entrepreneurship and eye health.

Established in 2019, SCF is a registered charity in England and Wales (charity number 1184946) and is the lead delivery partner for Futuremakers by Standard Chartered. Read more at

Standard Chartered

We are a leading international banking group, with a presence in 60 of the world’s most dynamic markets, and serving clients in a further 85. Our purpose is to drive commerce and prosperity through our unique diversity, and our heritage and values are expressed in our brand promise, Here for good.

Standard Chartered PLC is listed on the London and Hong Kong Stock Exchanges.

For more stories and expert opinions please visit Insights at Follow Standard Chartered on Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

[1] See Note to Editors