Our challenge

After the success of the first challenge Social Farming in the Apennines, Grameen Italia Foundation opens its second call for projects on the European Social Challenges Innovation Platform..

This is From job seekers to job creators: an invitation – worth €30,000 – to design an innovative program for disadvantaged people in order to foster business skills and self-employment mind set.

Therefore, we are looking for projects to facilitate the start-up of businesses and the development of entrepreneurial skills and methods, with the potential to generate social innovation.

Specifically, the target group is formed by long-term unemployed, migrants, women, young NEETs – Not engaged in Education, Work or Training – who are living in the Metropolitan City of Bologna.

The challenge is addressed at Start-ups, Social Enterprises and Non-profit Organizations dedicated to the social services provision and the implementing of job placement programs dedicated to the target group, who are profoundly interested in designing and setting services that are able to stimulate and support entrepreneurial initiatives.

A €30,000 grant will be given to the proposers of the best solution to the challenge, up to a maximum of three winners. The loan will be disbursed in two separate tranches: 80% will be awarded in advance and the remaining 20% at the end of a six-month period. Furthermore, Grameen Italia Foundation will support the implementation of the solution with a support and monitoring program.

The deadline for submitting your application is 15/04/2018.

The socio-economic context

The changes that have long crossed the global economy have profoundly affected the labour market, society, local communities and people. These changes act on real opportunities that people have of managing their economic autonomy.

The increasing liberalization and flexibilisation of the labour market, in fact, no longer ensures the stability of employment contracts, especially for the most disadvantaged sections of the population.

Therefore, people who are looking for an income, regardless of the possession of a degree, are called to develop new skills, primarily to strengthen their ability to adapt. For this reason, a training course aimed at developing self-entrepreneurship skills and starting a business represents an extremely important opportunity for those with fewer guarantees.

Always aiming at encouraging the social and economic development of the weakest sections of the population, Grameen Italia Foundation proposes, through the challenge “From job seekers to job creators”, to overcome the limits of a typical job placement program, which is often temporary and not resolutive, focusing instead on the development of their own business.

The European platform

The Social Challenges Innovation Platform receives fundings from the European Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation programme and it is coordinated by META with the support of the European BIC Network (EBN) and Impact Hub, and in Italy it is promoted by Aster.

Social Challenges Innovation Platform is an online environment where Public, Private and Third Sector Stakeholders can upload social and environmental challenges to receive innovative solutions from European innovators, start-ups and SMEs. The Platform looks for scalable solutions able to meet these challenges and needs, and with the potential to access new markets by the end of the grant and mentoring programme.

According to the platform-based language, Grameen Italia Foundation is a “Challenge Owner”: an organization that, after having met a salient problem on the territory, transforms it in an opportunity of change and opens a call for projects dedicated to its resolution.

Instead, those who are presenting the projects are called “Solution Providers”.

How to parteipate?

The text of the regulation is online.

Start-ups, companies and non-profit organizations can apply as Solution Providers. Solution Providers may take part individually or in a partnership with a maximum of 3 other organizations. For applications with at least two organizations, the appointment of a Coordinator is required.

The steps to participate are:

  • Create an account on the Socialchallenges.eu platform.
  • Upload your proposal (written in the points required by the regulation on page 7)
  • Wait for the proposal’s eligibility assessment (criteria on page 8 of the regulation)
  • Once the proposal is accepted, wait for the winners to be elected (criteria and score on page 9 of the regulation)

For any doubt or request, contact us at info@grameenitalia.it.