Friday, 28 March 2014

First Transnational Meeting - YEA Project

“It was a great pleasure to be present and be part of the “Youth Enterprise Accelerator” partnership.
Everyone was so welcoming and willing to share their experience and knowledge, that made me feel inspired and energised for the work ahead. Looking forward to working with you all!”
Carmen Llorente – Ashford Place (UK)

 The project “Youth Enterprise Accelerator” is a great opportunity to share experiences, ideas, suggestions as well as misgivings. Some partners have more experiences in working with young entrepreneurs than others. However, everybody is passionate about working with young people and everyone is keen to contribute to the success of this project. It was really interesting to hear about the prospects and challenges young (unemployed) people face in each partner country every day. It is an inspiring project which will affect all our world of employment in the most positive way. Responsibilities have been allocated and now we are all ready to start working on the project!
Dirk Bischof & Stefanie Hoeft – One Planet Ventures (UK)

Thanks to my previous trips to London last year within related project YSEE (young social enterprise europe) I was familiar with the area and finding a nice place to stay near the meeting made things much easier. The street near the hotel was in was packed by small shops - everyone was small enterprise - 'Supersaver' grocery shops, Chinese food, Kebab place, Fish'n'chips, Asian all you can eat, bakery, bike shop repairs, Hair products & Money transfer... you could see every little space in the area was occupied by small business. There must be something about entrepreneurship and making business in the minds of people that live in London - it is everywhere. That is why I am glad we had the kick-off meeting here, surrounded by opportunities and people trying to 'make it'. Dirk and Steffi from One Planet Ventures welcomed us with a warm smile in the conference room, where we met Carmen from Ashford place (the coordinator) and our German and French partners.

The mood was from the start was relaxed, we introduced our organizations, some were really big, some are small, but the idea was clear - find common grounds for organizing a great project. Presentations were interrupted only by short lunch Crepes restaurant in nearby Brixton Village, in previously deprived old factory building, now a fantastically busy place with small shops of many kinds, full of people and life. Back at meeting we discussed intensively all the materials we want to include in the project, and did not notice it is past 6pm - it was really a long day! We only managed to get to hotel and have some rest for the second final day where we got through the schedule, tasks and responsibilities of each partner, important thing in such a big project. We also agreed on next tasks and Skype conference in April - a good way to have more "meetings" with less resources. After the meeting we said goodbye to each other, wished a safe trip home. We look forward to getting home and starting to work on the "to-do-list". Thank you for the great meeting One Planet Ventures and Ashford place!
Martin Kubis – K.A.B.A. Slovensko (Slovakia)

At first I was little bit afraid, how little country as Slovakia can fit into the network of the "big" countries - like France, Germany, Italy and UK. But, every passing hour at the meeting I was getting more and more relaxed. The problems with young people are similar across Europe and the outputs of the project are also going to be useful in our country. The atmosphere at the meeting was very nice, I enjoyed meeting our new partners in person, learning about their activities and the discussion of the goals and outline of the project were very beneficial for me. I would like to thank Dirk, Steffi and Carmen for their hospitality and organizing the meeting.

I look forward to working together on the project and I am happy that I could feel the atmosphere of metropolitan city (busy  streets and many people), eat typical meals (from healthy ingredients :)) and enjoying the challenge of being alone while looking for bus stop for the no. 12 bus near Oxford street to get back to the hotel. The accommodation was typical for London (wooden floors and cracking stairs, carpets all over the place, tight corridors) but I appreciated being very close to the meeting place.
Maria Kubisova – K.A.B.A. Slovensko (Slovakia)

 The bilateral meeting in London with Dirk and Steffi from One Planet Venture was an opportunity to meet  with our partners, with whom we had had contact only by email. We started the meeting talking about the situation of young people in our countries, our idea of entrepreneurship and what we mean when we talk about supporting young people wishing to start a business. It was great to discover that we share the same views about this issue and how all of our associations aim to empower the youth. At the end of the two days meeting I brought home the feeling that it will be very easy to cooperate in this project and develop good and successful training methodologies and teaching materials.
Levi Bettin, Eurocultura (Italy)

 I found it a very interesting exchange of information on youth entrepreneurship in our respective countries, but what I appreciated most was the visit to entrepreneurial activities undertaken by young people. It was amazing to visit the vegan bakery in Brixton and realize, once again, how an idea that keeps into consideration the needs arising from changes in social behaviors – in this case eating habits – can turn into a wealthy business. I really hope that, also with the support of YEA project, also in Vicenza we will soon see a Ms. Cupcake shop!
Dalmar Mohamed Ali, Eurocultura (Italy)