Partners from the five countries particpating in the ESSE social enterprise education project visited Plymouth this week. This European funded project will develop a training programme and resources to equip educators and careers advisors to fully support students in choosing social enterprise as a career option. The project is led by City College, Plymouth in partnership with PSEN and Plymouth University.
Visititing Plymouth this week were Paolo from Matera Hub in Italy, who are developing social enterprise heritage tourism, Katja, Marga & Franka from ‘s-Hertogenbosch, a municipality in the Netherlands who have been keen to find out more about how Plymouth City Council supports social enterprise, Tess and Rolf from Urkraft in Sweden. Urkraft is a social enterprise which supports people with disabilities to work and Christin from Zukunftsbau, Berlin, a vocational training and employment provider for young people.
Delegates have spent the week piloting the new training course and visiting social enterprises, including Flameworks, Bikespace, Rumpus Cosy and the Devonport Column. They also attended the Urban Enterprise celebration event hosted at Millfields Trust’ new Genesis building. Everyone has been impressed by the range and quality of social enterprises in Plymouth and by the connections between local government, private sector, education and social enterprise.
Take-away benefits include a strategy for engaging the local authority with social enterprise in Skellefteå, Sweden and a plan to make s’Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands first social enterprise city. Plymouth social enterprises got the chance to meet and exchange business cards with their counterparts from Italy, Netherlands Germany and Sweden, with business opportunities beginning to emerge.