"All of you have overcome huge obstacles in your lives to not only find work for yourselves but also to create jobs for others," he added during a special reception at the state apartments of his official residence on Monday. "With the help and guidance of YBI, our trust works towards poverty eradication and youth empowerment. It is a great programme for India as it turns job seekers with a good business idea into job creators," said Lakshmi V Venkatesan, founding trustee of the Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust, who was accompanying the Indian contingent.

She had set up the trust in 1990 following a meeting with Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace during a state visit to Britain with her father, R Venkataraman, the then President of India. "It started as a result of a conversation with the Prince of Wales, making India the first country outside the UK to set up such a network. The Indian programme then went on to serve as a blueprint for projects in other parts of the sub-continent, like Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, and then on to South Africa, Brazil and other countries," she added.

The Prince of Wales has focused on helping young budding entrepreneurs for years and established the Prince’s Trust in 1976, when he was himself in his twenties. It was however in the aftermath of the 1981 riots in Brixton and Toxteth that the trust first began to help disadvantaged young people into self-employment in the UK. The Prince's Trust went on to set up a 'Youth Business Initiative', now called its 'Enterprise Programme'.

Since then, the heir to Britain's throne has established a number of other charities aimed at creating entrepreneurs and providing business support, mentoring and training to an estimated 395,000 people. This week marks a series of events celebrating the success of his various charities as the Prince of Wales meets some of the thousands of entrepreneurs that have accessed help and support to set up successful enterprises over recent years.


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