BBC One's The Apprentice contestant, Tom Bunday, is urging budding entrepreneurs to put their skills to the test in our trade-up task, Zero to Hero, this September. The Southampton-born tree surgeon, who reached week nine of the show, was at Southampton Solent University's £33m teaching facility, the Pod, to launch the challenge which will raise money to support local children living with cancer. 

Launching Zero to Hero, Tom said:

As someone who's had to be determined and driven to start at the bottom of business and become successful, this challenge really resonated with me. Entrepreneurs have to make a lot happen in short time frames, and I'm really excited to see how budding businesspeople, of all ages, will embrace this task. I can't wait to see what amazing final items the contestants manage to procure and how much money they raise. What's more, I'm delighted to support Wessex Cancer Trust and the vital work they do to support young people and children living with cancer in our local communities.

Southampton Solent University has pledged its support to the challenge by getting its Level 5 students to take it on as part of their Business Enterprise and Entrepreneurship course. 

Diane Bray, Dean of Sport, Health and Social Sciences at Southampton Solent University said:

Providing local care and support services for children living with cancer is incredibly important, so that young people and their families and carers don't have to worry about long distance travelling, the stress of which can often weaken the immune system and also cause financial hardship for many. With fiances tight across the health sector, as with so many others, it's vital that innovative campaigns such as these gain recognition and engage with people who can really help to make a difference to people's lives.

At the start of September, which is Childhood Cancer Awareness month, contestants will be given a rubber duck and will have 30 days to carry out a series of trades and obtain an item of higher value each time. They will then sell, raffle or auction their final item to raise as much money as possible for our children's support services. Winchester sixth form college Peter Symonds and Winchester Ladies Circle have already signed up for the challenge. It is aimed at anyone who wants to put their entrepreneurial and competitive skills to the test, from corporate teams to school children. 

Cancer can be a huge shock at any age, but particularly challenge for young people and children. Our specialist support services ensure local children get the support and help they need for free in a local setting.

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