On May 5 and 6, 2022, the Rural Employability Network made its first study visit to Legambiente, in the Italian towns of Succivo (Naples) and Fiumicino (Rome). The purpose of the visit was to learn first-hand about the Ecco Project, which is implemented through RiHUBS, spaces adapted for the development of circular economy projects and training on green employment.
During the visit we had representatives of the REN co-financing entities, who were able to learn from the RiHUBs staff about all parts of the project implementation process: mapping of localities, search for key agents, dynamization of volunteering...
Legambiente has a network of 15 RiHUBs all over Italy focused on different topics related to green employment and circular entrepreneurship. Thanks to this study visit, we discovered more about the lessons learned from the implementation experience of this project, as well as the possibilities of replicability and transferability in Spain.
The Rural Employability Network (REN) visited the Point Vert Project (Modave, Belgium) on the 2nd and 3rd of June where the Pays des Condruses Local Action Group shared with us the main lessons learned from their "test farms".
We were able to learn about the key aspects of the methodology and partnerships of the project to provide young people in the area with testing and support spaces for their agricultural entrepreneurship projects.
Since 2018, the GAL Pays des Condruses has been part of a national network of "test farms" whose aim is to share lessons learned and replicate the methodology in the territory, serving as an inspiration to transfer this good practice in Spain.
On 16 and 17 June, the Rural Employability Network (REN), visited the Youth Reworking Rural Project (Milan, Italy), where one of the partner organisations, CIAPE, shared with us its methodology for prototyping projects for youth entrepreneurship.
The Youth Reworking Rural project has continuity through Go Circular, which promotes the development of entrepreneurial skills through the creation of entrepreneurship projects that boost circular economy.
During the study visit we were able to participate in the sessions with the young people who are part of the project from Norway, Slovenia and Italy, as well as to learn about the different tools for entrepreneurship that the project applies.
From September the 28th to the 30th 2022 the Rural Employability Network (REN) has visited the Bisnes Lande Project. This project is implemented by the Local Action Group Viisari in the North-Central region of Finland.
This project develops activities aimed at youth entrepreneurship and at genereting positive change in the entrepreneurial culture of those rural areas. Its innovative methodology include the use of IT and Virtual Reality to provide young people access to local entrpereneurial resources managed by entity in the area.
Trhough this program, young participants have access to a network of local public and private agents that allowes them to broadcast their entrepreneurship ideas, improve their skills and network at a local level.
On 20-21 October 2022 the Rural Employability Network (REN) visited the "Social Farming" project in County Leitrim (Ireland), implemented by the Leitrim Development Company.
The project develops actions aimed at connecting family farms with society to provide support to a wide range of people who need help and who have challenges in their lives related to socio-employment integration.
The project is mainly focused on supporting people with disabilities and people with mental illness life experience, but also involves long-term unemployed, immigrants and refugees, young people at risk of early school leaving, etc.
On 17 November 2022 the Rural Employability Network (REN) visited the “(Re)Colher” project in Arouca (Portugal), implemented by Associaçao A4.
The aim of the project is the social and professional reintegration of people with alcohol-related problems through agricultural practice, wickerwork and macramé. For this purpose, there is both an individualized intervention and a training programme (3S - To Be, To Feel and To Know) that works on personal, social and professional skills. In addition, group sessions are held at the end of the week, in which people who have already been through the project also participate, and who can be a stimulus and support for the current participants.
The support of the Arouca Municipality Council and other local entities is crucial for the success of the project, which has become a reference in Portugal.