Unemployment in the United Kingdom affects 1 out of 7 young people, half of whom are young women. That rate is three times higher than the national average for all ages combined. For these young people, unemployment often goes hand in hand with low self-confidence, lack of physical activity, mental health issues or alcohol abuse. Street League was founded in 2003 to use sports as a way to help 16- to 25-year olds find training or employment.
By combining soccer with more traditional classes to improve employability, as well as meetings with professionals, Street League was reaching a clientele that was 93% masculine. Because girls are just as affected as boys by unemployment, in 2014 the charity decided to develop a special program for them.
Along the shores of the Mediterranean the effects of the economic crisis are still being felt, with high levels of youth unemployment and a stark lack of opportunity. Entrepreneurs for Social Change (E4SC) aims to support the ideas of young social entrepreneurs from the Euro-Mediterranean region.
Through a week of training and nine months of mentoring, 20 young social entrepreneurs are given the chance to acquire the business, funding, marketing and intercultural understanding needed to help take their businesses to the next level and create positive social impact.
One of the projects to come from Entrepreneurs for Social Change is represented by the puppet you see here. Puppets 4 Kids is a project of YES Theatre, which aims to help improve the cognitive skills and psychosocial well-being of Palestinian children and youth. The YES Theatre and its partners are working to respond to local community needs, engaging with local partners to develop creativity and innovation through artistic performances, drama workshops, capacity building and cultural exchange activities.
The E4SC project was devised by the Fondazione CRT in collaboration with the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations and the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The Trust for London, jointly with the City Bridge Trust, has launched a new Special Initiative called ‘Moving on Up’ which aims to increase the employment rates of young black men in London by funding work that will improve the support offered to them and increase their pathways into employment. This is a two-year Initiative and approximately £1.1m will be invested.
The target group is young people aged 16-24 who are from black British, black African, black Caribbean and mixed black ethnic groups who are actively seeking work. Suitable organisations were invited to submit an application for work which addressed one or more of the following:
Ashoka Deutschland GmbH and the Robert Bosch Stiftung are working to transfer successful social entrepreneurial ideas from abroad to Italy, Spain, and Greece in a project entitled “This Works! Ideas and Solutions for Employment and Recovery in Southern Europe”. At the same time, they are developing the necessary structures at a local level and supporting the training of potential social entrepreneurs.
About thirty successful social entrepreneurs were selected from the Ashoka network – individuals whose ideas can contribute to the fight against youth unemployment and to the establishment of resilient service structures. The chosen Ashoka Fellows develop business plans for the transfer of their ideas and then present these to representatives from politics, business, government, and civil society at events held in Italy, Spain, and Greece to gain local support for the start-ups. At the same time, employees of Ashoka and Ashoka Fellows offer advice at a local level to interested young people who want to become social entrepreneurs themselves.
The project is conducted by Ashoka Deutschland GmbH together with Ashoka Europe and country offices in Spain, Italy and Greece. Foundations from the three target countries support the project. Companies and consultancies are involved by offering pro bono services.