The partnership of European Social Entrepreneur-ESE decided to conduct several interviews in each partner country. The idea of this virtual tour is to receive feedback from successful social enterprises, inform and educate our audience on existing best practices. The final goal is to intrigue interested parties in the field of social entrepreneurship.
Let’s make a stop on this tour and review the interview conducted in Greece. Fenia Kalantzi representing the Institute of Entrepreneurship Development (iED), a partner organization in the ESE project, interviewed Eva Arzomanidou, a teacher working on “Exantas” social enterprise, an educational centre focusing on alternative methods of teaching located in the city of Larisa, Greece.
Exantas is a Social Cooperative Enterprise born out of the need to create the conditions that will allow working with dignity, imagination, and creativity, taking distances from any form of competition promoted by both the market and grading. educational system to create those conditions that will allow teachers to walk with students of all ages this difficult, but also beautiful, path in the field of knowledge and learning.
Realizing the difficulties that the modern school has to face, which is systematically devalued, with systems that are constantly changing, Exantas tries to support students in all stages of school life, from Primary to High School. Exantas focuses on the assistance of any child to overcome difficulties and disappointments, to fill gaps of previous years, to deepen the knowledge and to consolidate the material of each school year, moving confidently to the next.
Regarding the question “How do they involve people in their team” the answer we received was mostly focused on how they choose future colleagues. The primal request is to involve people with whom they share the same philosophy, educational process, and knowledge. They regularly organise meetings and seminars on educational subjects, and a cycle of people is created where they exchange ideas and opinions and keep in touch with this newly established network in case of any new positions that will occur. However, they also use the traditional way of hiring, receiving CV and motivational letters.
Moreover, we continued with the question “What is the social contribution as a social enterprise” and the response there was, that through the hard-living times that we all face, it is extremely important, as a social enterprise, to provide salaries that respond to everyone’s needs. They have also established a lending library where anyone could benefit from this service. Another action made by Exantas is the organization of workshops and seminars around educational and psychological aspects, open to all citizens and provision of participants in all actions from vulnerable groups. This social enterprise also actively engages in actions and festivals prepared by the Municipality of Larissa.
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