KIZ SINNOVA, Agricultural University of Athens and Development Agency of Karditsa, partners of the transnational project “SCALING TRUST-BASED PARTNERSHIP MODELS TO RECHARGE YOUTH ENTREPRENEURSHIP: SUPPORTING UNDERSERVED COMMUNITIES WITH INNOVATIVE ENTREPRENEURSHIP SUPPORT INSTRUMENTS (TPM-RYE) PROJECT “, organized a field visit around the mentoring services provided to young people not in employment-education-training (NEETs) in Greece. The field visit aimed to engage more partners and stakeholders to the mentoring intervention in Greece, as well as to help build confidence and encourage mentor development of the network of volunteer mentors, established under the project in Greece.

The field visit started on 4 November 2021 in Athens. Specifically, a capacity building meeting was held at the Agricultural University of Athens to develop a better understanding of the actual needs of the various mentoring projects for different target groups, which have been set up across Greece. During the meeting, interested mentors and mentoring managers discussed with the KIZ representative Mr Joerg Schoolmann, mentoring service and the details for the efficient delivery of mentoring to NEETs in Greece.

The field visit in Athens was continued on 5 November 2021, with 2 events. More specifically, a work meeting with stakeholders & possible partners in Athens around mentoring interventions was organized in the facilities of WELCOMMON Athens. The participants represented organizations interested in participating in the Trust-Based Partnership Model developed across Greece within the scope of the project, as well as public authorities and international organizations interested to support NEETs, through mentoring services. During the meeting, the representative of the Fund Operator (Ecorys Polska) Mrs Agata Maksimowska represented the EEA and Norway Grants Fund for Youth Employment activity. The Greek partners of the project “Young Entrepreneurs Succeed” Agricultural University of Athens and Development Agency of Karditsa presented the project and the results achieved so far. KIZ SINNOVA provided an overview of the mentoring service. A fruitful discussion ensued over the implementation of mentoring for the employment integration of NEETs in Greece. The parties agreed that the mentoring service could add real value to NEETs in Greece, especially if it is combined with other support services, like training and coaching. The representatives of Ministry of Labour and Greek Managing Authority of European Social Fund (ESF+) expressed their interest for the results of the project “Young Entrepreneurs Succeed” and their willingness to work together with project partners and inform national policies and actions/measures to support NEETs.

The second event was designed as an Induction Mentoring Training Workshop for refugees’ mentors and mentees, which took place in the facilities of the Greek Forum for Refugees in Athens, in collaboration with two NGOs the “Greek Forum for Refugees” and the “Forum of Migrants”, representing communities of refugees and migrants in Greece. Totally, 12 participants were trained to become more familiar with their respective roles as mentors or mentees, , and the expectations of mentors & mentees and expressed their questions/remarks related to mentoring . The participants agreed that the mentoring service could be really helpful for young refugees and migrants and committed to work toward the establishment of mentoring relationships, as soon as possible.   

During 8 November 2021, two events were held in Karditsa in the framework of the field visit. Firstly, an open online mentoring induction training workshop for the beneficiaries of the project was organized. During the workshop, ANKA provided an overview of the mentoring service and KIZ representative discussed with the NEETs about specific issues of this service, as these emerged from questions/remarks of the participants. Finally, the beneficiaries were informed about the process to be followed in order to participate in the mentoring intervention, and they were encouraged to submit their expression of interest, as soon as possible.  

Subsequently, an offline working meeting was organized in the facilities of ANKA with local stakeholders, interested to participate in the mentoring intervention as mentors. After the presentation of the project and the results achieved so far, a detailed discussion over the benefits of the service to young unemployed interested in entrepreneurship was held, as well as the benefits of the service to the volunteer mentors. The participants agreed to collaborate with ANKA during the next period for the registration of new mentors in the mentoring network.

The field visit was completed on 9 November 2021 in Thessaloniki (Northern Greece). A Capacity Building Workshop for registered mentors was held in the facilities of the Creativity Platform. Joerg Schoolmann (KIZ) presented processes and techniques for mentors. The registered mentors provided their feedback deriving from the mentoring sessions conducted under the project so far and asked for ways to improve their effectiveness. The participants agreed that constant capacity building is necessary for a successful mentoring service in Greece, given the lack of experience in volunteer mentoring delivery in the country. ANKA and KIZ committed to prepare and deliver a series of short online training sessions for mentors, during the next months.    

The Scaling trust-based partnership models to recharge youth entrepreneurship: Supporting underserved communities with innovative entrepreneurship support instruments (TPM-RYE) project, benefits from €2,3M grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA and Norway Grants Fund for Youth Employment. The aim of the programme is to activate unemployed youth to access the labour market and promote entrepreneurship

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