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Dragons Winners 24

We celebrate another successful Dragons’ Apprentice Challenge

April 3, 2024

Tuesday 26th April – Team Atlas from John F Kennedy School has been proclaimed the overall winner of the eleventh annual Dacorum Dragons’ Apprentice Challenge. The team was one of ten who took part in the challenge and was presented their award by the Mayor of Dacorum Cllr William Allen.

All teams from local secondary schools were supplied with £100 stake and challenged to turn it into £1,000 or more, with support and advice from mentors within the borough’s business community. The budding entrepreneurs this year raised over £14,000 which takes the total for the past 11 years at a whopping £124,000.

The teenage tycoons in waiting stepped up to tackle a charity challenge and were showered with praise on Tuesday night at the Awards Night held at Shendish Manor Hotel. The SuperDragon judges – leaders from the world of business, education and local government – were impressed with their all round business abilities as well as the confident way in which they presented themselves, always representing their charity. The teams showed determination and perseverance in their aim to raise as much money as possible for their charity.

The Mayor of Dacorum, Cllr William Allen presented the awards and inspired the audience of young people, businesses and charities by emphasising the practical value of the Dragons’ Apprentice Challenge. “I’d like to congratulate all the teams that took part in this year’s Dragons Apprentice Challenge and particularly to overall winners team Atlas from John F Kennedy School. I was very impressed to see the all the teams display’s and get the opportunity to talk to all the students about the challenges they faced. Listening to the presentations I was struck by how they learnt that allocating individual roles created a stronger team and communication with teachers, the public and social media made a big impact.”

Named as overall winners on the night were the team from John F Kennedy School, who scooped a Snow Centre snowboarding session for their efforts in support of John Sayer Almshouses in Berkhamsted. Their Dragon was Will Hobhouse from Sarratt Equity who said “The drive, commitment and energy required for success was demonstrated in a variety of ways with the participants finding the time and initiative required to accomplish the tasks involved. It is to the credit of all those to achieve such a great result. I’d thoroughly recommend the Dragon’s Apprentice Challenge to every single school as it is such a rich learning experience for the students in life, business, teamwork and resilience. And of course it is a great way to connect with local charities and businesses.

Other winners were:
Most Money raised: Flight 10 from Sir John Lawes School
Best Business idea: Athena from John F Kennedy School
Close Co-operation with Charity: Equestria Girls from Adeyfield School
Best Display: Triple Dragons from Longdean School
Best Presentation: Flight 10 from Sir John Lawes School

As they celebrated their successes all the teenagers agreed that the Dacorum Dragons Apprentice Challenge – just completed it’s eleventh year – was both a lot more work than they had ever realised but a test that both developed their skills and gave them a chance to get involved in their community.

Schools who completed the 2023/24 Challenge: Adeyfield, Hemel Hempstead, John F Kennedy, Longdean, Tring and Sir John Lawes.

The teams are supported by Dragons from local businesses including: Creative Stripes, Unleashed, Heads Up and Freer, Sarratt Equity, Alternative Perspectives, Art by Vanessa, Howden Insurance, Redway HR, 4R Office, B&M Care

Charities/Community Groups to benefit include: Community Action Dacorum, Gaddesden Riding for the Disabled, Waterways Experiences, Herts Young Homeless, Dacorum Mencap, Watford FC Trust, Hospice of St Francis, Pepper Foundation, Dacorum Heritage Trust, John Sayer Almshouses

The Challenge is organised by Connect Dacorum and runs annually from September to April. Any schools, businesses or charities across Dacorum that are interested in taking part in Dragons’ Apprentice 2024/25 should contact

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