At the end of February, RTIK welcomed an international camera team to film our work on an extremely important topic for us - youth entrepreneurship.
As a member of EBN and one of the main participants from the local ecosystem in Ruse, Ruse Chamber of Commerce and Industry was chosen to join with a participant in an international expert group for the exchange of good practices in the promotion of youth entrepreneurship. This group was formed as part of the Better Incubation program ( http://betterincubation.eu/ ) and aims to survey and select best practices in supporting young entrepreneurs. In our joint work with our international partners, we found that young people are placed in a disadvantageous position compared to other entrepreneurs, which prevents the utilization of their potential to create and implement successful and innovative entrepreneurial ideas.
Therefore, as part of the Better Incubation initiative and drawing on successful international practices, we reached out to our partners to test their applicability on local soil. The direction in which we concentrated our efforts was social entrepreneurship, the support of which has been among our priorities since 2015.
In organizing the pilot mentoring program, we partnered with many stakeholders, but a key role was played by:
1) BEM.BG, with whom we jointly organized the first edition of the entrepreneurial competition "Start Young" in Ruse in 2021, during which we selected some of our participants in the Better Incubation program.
2) Tsvetelin Nikolov - young entrepreneur and co-founder of Pleggi.com (https://pleggi.com), who told us what young people like him actually need.
3) "Elias Caneti" State University of Ruse, whose management and teaching staff helped us to select the rest of the participants in the innovative mentoring program.
Thus, although few in number, extremely motivated and capable young people participated in the program, who during the three shooting days talked about their ideas and our joint work on them in the last few months.
Better Incubation is a 2-year program (2021 – 2023) powered by the LIAISE project, funded by the European Union's Employment and Social Innovation programme. The project aims to promote inclusive and social entrepreneurship in Europe by mobilizing and empowering business support organizations (BSOs) with tools and good practices to effectively support social enterprises.