“Design your ideas” is an international exchange, hosted by Associazione No Borders, based on social entrepreneurship.
From the 21st – 30th September, 39 young people from 5 European countries (Portugal, France, Italy, Lithuania and Romania) met at Belvedere Marittimo (Italy) to work together on their own strengths and entrepreneurial ideas.
The aim of this project was to increase the level of knowledge, skills and competences of the participants regarding social entrepreneurship.
During one week, through non-formal education methods and practical workshops, they gained information and skills which allowed them to develop ideas for sustainable business plans with social implications.
Participants got the chance to visit realities that could inspire them, by meeting some local organisations and exchanging good practices with them.
A good example of these different realities was the accomodation in itself, Agriturismo l’Arca, entirely eco-friendly, where volunteers and staff consume and sell everything they produce, from the meat to the cheese, to the fruits and vegetables.
In this context, they met the association Legambiente Riviera dei Cedri, which promotes the protection of the environment, and together with the association Giza, the local Scout and some citizens, they spent one morning cleaning the beach of Belvedere Marittimo (Calabria, Italy).
Moreover, since the project involved other international organisations, participants were in contact with other young people with different cultures and ideas and got to see different approaches concerning start-ups.
During this week, they were asked to work in teams on feasible and concrete business plans. Their projects had to contribute to the sustainable development of the community they came from.
This workshop allowed them not only to learn how to work and discuss to find solutions to practical problems within a multicultural group but also to develop working skills such as public speaking, time and task management.
The 7th day of the exchange, the groups had 5 minutes to present their business plan in front of a jury and the other participants. Among the 5 proposed social entrepreneurship ideas, the victory went to the idea of creating a social food truck, that will use local and sustainable products, will involve disadvantaged people in the working process and will distribute the leftovers to the people more in need inside the community.