BCNL presents the program Entrepreneurship for Non-profit Organizations at the Support for Social Innovations conference
The Support for Social Innovations conference, organized by the Ruse Chamber of Commerce and Industry, was conducted on July 18th in Ruse. In front of an audience of representatives of non-profit organizations and the business community in Ruse, Pavleta Aleksieva, Programming Director of BCNL, presented the Entrepreneurship for Non-profit Organizations program, which in its current seventh iteration has been carried out with the support of the America for Bulgaria Foundation and the UniCredit Foundation and with the partnership of TELUS International Europe.
Pavleta Aleksieva presented the capabilities of the Program in the direct support in the process of capacity building which BCNL provides to civil organizations. With proper examples and showing some already accomplished business ideas of the Program, she encouraged the representatives of NPOs taking part in the forum to carry out additional economic activities, thus creating social innovations and solving social issues. Pavleta gave an account of the winners of the sixth iteration of the program – of their business ideas and the ways in which their business ventures relate with the missions of the organizations – an essential requirement in the selection of participants in the Program.
The participants in the forum learned more about: The “Animus Association” Foundation, which received backing for the establishment of the “Blaga Baba Blaga” bakery, an establishment which would sell homemade meals and snacks, all prepared by solitary elderly women or women who were subject to violence; The Marine Club “Friends of the sea” in Varna, whose aim is to develop the activities of the social enterprise “Together on Board” in a sustainable way, by providing qualified professional tuition for divers and for helmsmen of nautical vessels weighing up to 40gt, with 20% of their earnings being invested in free, identical tuition for orphaned youths, youths from low-income families and unemployed young adults; The Maria’s World Foundation – investing the money they won into the sustainable development of catering services the organization provides through their protected coffee shop “Svetove”, with the goal of expanding the possibilities for assisted employment for youths with mental disabilities; The “Eyes on Four Paws” Foundation and their idea to create a hotel for dogs, offering to take care of pets in their owners’ absence and investing their earnings in order to maintain the foundation’s programs for training guide dogs for blind people; The “IDEA” Association, who are going to start providing catering services through which they hope to expand the opportunities of the Social Teahouse to provide employment for youths raised in social and economic isolation.
Pavleta talked about the stages in which the Program is conducted in and also emphasized on the way it is structured so as to provide practical knowledge and skills for preparing a business plan as well as enhancing the presentation skills of participants, providing possibilities for acquiring financial help and creating partnerships. Pavleta also presented a new stage in the program – Accelerator, through which finalists are given continuing support and mentorship from representatives of the business sector.
Pavleta Aleksieva reminded that the deadline for applying to the Entrepreneurship for non-profit organizations 2017/2018 program was on the 6th of July. 86 ideas for business initiatives from over 30 towns were received, with the next part of the program being the examination and selection of organizations which are to take part in this year’s iteration of the Program which helps develop the business skill of non-profit organizations in Bulgaria.
The winners in this year’s seventh edition of the competition for “Best business plan” are going to be sharing a prize total of 40 000 leva.
Additional information for the Entrepreneurship for Non-profit Organizations 2017/2018 program can be found here.
About the conference
The event is organized by the Ruse Chamber of Commerce and Industry with the help of representatives from the University of Greenwich (England) and organizations supporting business from Italy, Ireland and Spain.
The conference timetable included subjects related to sustainable business models for enterprises and not-for-profit organizations; knowledge, skills and competences needed for the development of social innovations and where and how they can be obtained; programs for expert and financial assistance for social entrepreneurs, circular and collaborative economics.
The newest EU-wide platform for educational mobility – ECVET, which was developed under the ESII project and co-financed by the European Commission under the ERASMUS+ program was also introduced.