C2E as a youth-led, transnational project that will develop, test and implement innovative practices in a much neglected area in the field of youth support.
Responding to the priorities of the Lisbon agenda and the Europe 2020 strategy treating entrepreneurship as a key component of smart, sustainable and inclusive growth, C2E targets young carers aged 18-30 with particular focus on women from low-income families. It adopts a youth-led methodology which will construct and implement evidence-based, well-tested and replicable educational and training curricula to develop young carers’ practical, creative and entrepreneurial skills to enable them to become confident and successful young entrepreneurs.
According to the Erasmus+ funded Care2Work project young carers face a number of barriers when accessing education, training and employment. The same research suggests that young carers develop a number of soft skills and competencies (interpersonal, practical) that with the right support can lead them into the development of their own entrepreneurial business. Since young carers have little opportunity to improve their position in society through regular employment, entrepreneurship represents an option for overcoming these hurdles (Peredo 2006) and may help them accomplish several goals, such as increased self-worth and satisfaction through overcoming obstacles in the labour market (Ghormley 2001). At a critical point for Europe when youth unemployment continues to rise, IARS has put together a strategic partnership to run C2E as a youth-led, transnational project that will develop, test and implement innovative practices in a newly emerged area in the field of youth support.
• Construct a new training curriculum and create a range of courses (online and face to face) for young carers and social workers which will allow them to develop the necessary skills, knowledge, and competences to become successful young entrepreneurs.
• Test and implement training material in the UK, Greece, Italy, Romania and Belgium and use the comparative learning for informing national and EU-wide practices and policies.
Entrepreneurial competences, such as business and strategic planning with a social dimension, will be the main pillar of the capacity building course curriculum to be developed for the young potential entrepreneurs of C2E.
C2E will build on C2W’s (www.care2work.org) evidence base which called for additional research in the lives and futures of young carers. Because of this, each partner organisation we are working with have displayed interest and skill in developing practices which promote entrepreneurship as a means of tackling labour market disadvantages. In Italy, for example; policies that promote such initiatives have emerged to respond to unmet needs in the field of work integration. In Belgium, the Belgian Communities and Regions, took a set of initiatives, demonstrating their interest for entrepreneurship seen as both as new source of jobs and as a response to new needs. Partners will capitalize and build on each other’s knowledge and experience from best practices in their national context, for future transfer of know-how at the EU level. The project partnership will create an EU pool of expertise and networking opportunities for youth, professionals and policy makers.
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