Nthakoana Maema, Belle and Co. Associate, reported back on the last few days of the Project-building workshop held in Florina, Greece as part of the third edition of the Erasmus + supported programme Dive into Social Entrepreneurship:
This was the day we were all here for I guess. As much as the team feels like they might have been going around in circles for the previous Dives, I think having participated in Dive 1, this exercise to build new partnerships and create new ideas beyond Dive is a good practical outcome.
So at first we all shared what ideas we would like to work on. The main themes that popped up were:
1. Intergration of economic migrants into society and creating income generating opportunities for them.
2. Boosting sustainability by promoting environmental habits in schools (young children).
3. Creating opportunities for young women in Technology using social enterprise.
4. Boosting the local economies by creating SEs/techincal schools/digitization of traditional jobs that can create jobs for young people.
From this the various teams were organically created with some delicate canvassing.
South Africa ended up tackling Point 4 with Costa Rica, Peru and Macedonia under Key Action 2; with an added ear to Point 1.
Ideation: At first it was a challenge how to step out of Dive thinking and also to ensure that what ever we create has shared meaning and ownership for each partner. Also that now that we have build capacity, how do we get into action (Sink or Swim!) as we have a bank of ideas from the various activities we have done throughout the years no concrete action.
So we started to share some realities of youth in our countries.
It was clear that we had something in common across the continents:
1. Public schooling failing youth on how to prepare them for the future e.g. project management, soft skills like critical thinking, creativity, problem solving, entrepreneurial skills even simple things like job search
2. Young people lack places where they can go and meet together build new ideas, local islands that influence youth unemployment
3. Young entrepreneurs lack guiding from mentors (inaccessible and expensive)
4. Young people do not have many opportunities to broaden their views (transnational social capital) or lack information about exchanges
5. We also have older younger people in corporate spaces who are feeling burned out by lack of meaning in their lives yet they have acquired good experience and skills.
5. Young people not job ready.
There was a lot that came from this. The main feeling was that we need step out of TOT mode and really get into creating new ventures with young people as these ventures could create opportunity for employment and exchanges within the Dive network that has already been built.
So we spoke about different ideas:
– creating a new venture creation e-school
– transnational mentoring and consulting platform
– fellowship within the network and possibly paid for those outside network
– platform to share global job opportunities/internships with trusted SEs in each country and we provide matching and hosting services
What I really like about this Dive 3 session is that we are all pushing to start something out with these ideas. We want to see them come to life and it will be through sharing experiences, tips and funding sources.