Over the 24 months of the YEP project, various activities were carried out in the three involved cities of Milan, Lisbon and Madrid.
The Program included 3 steps:
1. Training courses
In each of the 3 partner cities, a training course on how to start a business, targeted to youth with fewer opportunities, was carried out from April to July 2017.
The trainings were carried out according to the experiences, methods, skills, etc. of the partners; however, a common approach was devised for the project. In particular, partners:
- included both technical modules and competence development in the training, as transversal skills are key for personal and professional growth and even more so for entrepreneurs and young people willing to enter the labour market and actively participate in the society.
- designed shared criteria and tools to evaluate and select the participants and the youth business ideas
- used non-formal training methodologies and a mix of methods – lectures, study visits, practical activities such as mystery client and customer discovery , experiences by young entrepreneurs, etc. – to engage the young participants and adapt the training content to the specific needs and characteristics of vulnerable youth;
- involved various trainers and experts in training delivery, to make use of specific and complementary experiences and skills and give participants a wide range of contents and knowledge;
- Tested new and innovative practices, such as the Lean Start Up methodology in Madrid.
The 3 training programmes can be downloaded here.
At the end of the training courses, the young people had to “pitch” their business ideas in front of internal and external evaluation committees. The best 5 youth business ideas in each city were selected. These had the chance to attend an incubation programme, aiming at supporting the implementation of their project.
The selected ideas and their young promoters – the “YEPPERS” – can be found here.
3. Accompanying and access to credit
All young participants benefitted from a support aimed at scouting possible funding for their business ideas, such as a microcredit.
Across all stages, a social tutoring service was offered to the young participants. Social tutors supported the young participants in their participation and learning, listening to their needs and issues, supporting their motivation, etc.
Besides that, various activities were carried out in the three involved cities of Milan, Lisbon and Madrid, with the main goal to share experiences and exchange best practice in the complex fields of social and labour inclusion, youth self-entrepreneurship, training and incubation, accompanying and start-up process.
- three transnational project meeting have been held in Milan (November 2016), Lisbon (May 2017) and Madrid (October 2018), with representatives of partners organizations, to jointly discuss, plan and implement the program.
- Three transnational short-term staff trainings have been held in Madrid (February 2017), Lisbon (May 2017) and Milan (November 2017), to share practices, tools and experiences, meet with experts and carry out study visits, in the field of youth entrepreneurship and young people with fewer opportunities. The programme of the trainings can be downloaded here.
In addition, local and transnational multiplier events were carried out in Lisbon (October 2017 and May 2018), Milan (April and June 2018) and Madrid (April and October 2018). These events – with the participation of public and private organisations working with youth and in the field of entrepreneurship, as well as the Yeppers in each city – aimed at raise awareness on the project topics and disseminate the Intellectual Outputs. The programme of the events can be downloaded here.
The intellectual outputs are practical and methodological documents, which may be a useful set of working tools for the partners and other organizations. Within the YEP project, the following intellectual outputs are jointly produced by the partners:
- Manual “Not-for-profit organisations and youth entrepreneurship: how to support young people with fewer opportunities”
- Toolkit “Empowering young people through entrepreneurship: a trainer’s toolkit”
- Methodological document “Starting up: how to incubate businesses from young people with fewer opportunities”
All the intellectual outputs will be available for free download as opens source materials.