With the wide participation of stakeholders, a Press Conference and Round Table on the Educational Programme in Social Entrepreneurship took place on Monday 13 May 2019. The Educational Programme is part of the actions of the project "Support of Social Enterprises Development and Enhancement of Employment / SoSEDEE", funded by the Cross-border Cooperation Programme Interreg V-A Greece Bulgaria 2014-2020. The project is the result of the cooperation between the Municipality of Gotse Delchev in Bulgaria, SOS Children's Villages, and the Eastern Macedonia and Thrace Institute of Technology. Its objective is the enhancement of employment of individuals belonging to vulnerable social groups and residing in the cross-border area of the Programme.

The event was realised with the cooperation and support of the Regional Unit of Evros and the Chamber of Evros. Mr. Ioannis Bogdis, Special Consultant of the Deputy Governor of the Region of Evros, opening the event’s proceedings, extended the greetings of the Deputy Governor to the participants and highlighted the potential and the opportunities created by the Interreg Greece Bulgaria Programme , as well as the Region’s support to the SoSEDEE project.

Mr. Georgios Vafeas, Director of the SOS Children's Villages Thrace, highlighting the Project’s objectives, said: “Through the actions we realise, we get very well acquainted with the difficulties faced by individuals belonging in high-risk groups, and by their families as well. The development of social entrepreneurship can provide solutions in many of these issues, and especially in the issue of the integration of these individuals into the labour market. SOS Children's Villages participate in the SoSEDEE Project in an effort to support and empower vulnerable groups in the Cross-border Area, as well as individuals and families supported by the SOS Children's Villages structures and actions.”  

Mr. Georgios Theriou, Associate Professor at the Department of Management and Business of the Eastern Macedonia and Thrace Institute of Technology, presenting the distance-learning programme, said: “The Educational Programme was designed to provide a fully structured approach to social entrepreneurship. By completing this programme, the participants will have acquired valuable knowledge that will help them to create their own social enterprise, or to be employed in social economy enterprises, maximising the social impact of their actions, according to the modern challenges of the market, while significantly minimising the possibility of their venture’s failure.” 

Mr. Leonidas Skerletopoulos, National representative of the European Social Marketing Association, Marketing and Communication Consultant of the Chamber of Evros, participated in the event with a presentation. Mr. Skerletopoulos, as a certified coach with a specialisation in consumer behavioural architecture, helps Social Enterprises to design interventions for social change.

Mr. Dimitris Kontopidis, Founder of the Social Enterprise HUMANE and Honorary President of the Hellenic Cystic Fibrosis Association, intervened in the event by presenting an especially successful case study of Social Entrepreneurship for the social integration of individuals with disabilities. 

The last intervention was that of Mr. Georgios Steggos, Social Entrepreneur and Co-founder of Cyclefi & Recytrust, who presented one more special case study of Social Entrepreneurship, and specifically, an innovative model of a “smart and interconnected city” that takes into account the environmental impact of its citizens, aiming at the improvement of their daily life and at sustainable development.

Furthermore, on the same day (from 14:00 to 18:00), an informative action regarding the Educational Programme took place in front of the Town Hall of Alexandroupoli.

The submission of applications for the 2nd Cycle of the Educational Programme is expected to open soon. Those interested can get more information at www.sosedee.eu and at the social media webpages of the Project.

Presentations Eastern Macedonia and Thrace Institute of Technology & SOS Children's Villages


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