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What Happened During the EYES International Seminar in Cairo

What Happened in the EYES International Seminar in Cairo

EYES project, involving 6 countries from the EU and southern Meda, aims at exploiting the potential of Social Entrepreneurship and its appeal towards new generations, including a youth work approach, to provide an answer for youth own careers and the possibility to answer societal challenges at the same time. With EYES, we want to equip NGO and youth workers with tools to promote and educate youth in Social Entrepreneurship and sustainable growth, providing support to young people in the Euromed context to become social entrepreneurs.

The Project in a Nutshell

  • wants to provide young people deepened knowledge and a set of skills,
  • based on the EntreComp model,
  • to create, manage and run successful social enterprises,
  • contributing to the social cohesion and inclusive growth,
  • and finding employability alternatives.

1. Work Package 2 – Research

The Research provides a deep insight in the current situation and state of art regarding Social Entrepreneurship and its connection with Youth Work, as well as existence of educational tools for young people to build up their own social enterprise, in the different countries part of the project.

2. Work Package 3 – Training Tools

The core part of the project is represented by the possibility to draft, design, test and implement Training Tools to be used to make youth reflect and become motivated in developing their own Social Entrepreneurship project. It comprises a series of tools, including a training manual, a series of webinars, a training of trainers, and local pilot workshops.

The consortium will combine entrepreneurial practices, Youth work approach and the methodology of non-formal education to provide a set of competences useful to build social entrepreneurship projects.

The EYES International Seminar

The seminar of EYES serves as a way to collect all the results of the research and to plan the design of training tools, including the drafting of the various products foreseen. In the seminar it is planned that the results achieved and findings be discussed and a draft of the first part of the manual for the research and training tools be designed.

In terms of Work Package 2, the International Seminar was held in Cairo, Egypt, from the 27th of January until he 2nd of February. The seminar was used to compile all the research’s findings and to organize the following work package, which includes the creation of training tools. 20 participants were involved from all partner countries, including social entrepreneurs, youth workers, volunteers, trainers and people who are interested in social entrepreneurship.

Icebreaking session during the International Seminar in Cairo.

On the arrival day, an opening dinner was scheduled where participants got to know each other before the seminar started officially. During the first working day of the seminar, introductory icebreaking activities took place to get participants involved in the project and a short activity about setting expectations was delivered. Then, a workshop was held where participants successfully discussed the difference between social entrepreneurship and “traditional” entrepreneurship.

EYES International Seminar Day 2

The next day of the Seminar started with an exciting discussion on the national context of social entrepreneurship and best practices from partner countries. The created presentations for this discussion gave insights about social entrepreneurship work, organization, and facilities, in addition to mentioning the advantages and disadvantages and identifying the opportunities and challenges that each country faces. A workshop based on the data collection through questionnaires and the focus group reflections followed, which had been prepared by each national team.

Continuing with the workshop, for the activity “EntreComp to create youth employability and social value” the 20 participants were divided into 3 groups:

  1. Webinars
  2. Training of trainers
  3. Manual script and research

Every group organized several methods and shared ideas for the Social Entrepreneurship application and implementation so that each local organization would easily share the seminar’s output and widely spread the research data and tools. Furthermore, there was an activity about practical work ideas which was presented by each local group.

Later, the participants visited the local social enterprise “Startup Haus Cairo, by enpact”, downtown in Cairo, where the community manager welcomed all the participants giving them insights about the facilities, support, and activities they offer. They discussed the current challenges and steps that should be taken into consideration before starting a social enterprise, giving tips and tricks and answering the participants’ questions, which was a great opportunity to transform from the theoretical to the practical engaging side of the world.

EYES International Seminar Day 3 – Future Steps

On the last day of the Seminar, the sessions and workshops mainly addressed the future plans and the next steps of the project, through subgroups that worked on the below follow-up topics:

  • Non-social enterprise ideas
  • New International cooperation/educational youth projects
  • Next project phase guidelines

At the end, there was a final evaluation and feedback task that all participants were asked to complete in order to compare their initial expectations with the outcomes achieved and whether they were met or not. Moreover, there were two activities for the participants to provide their feedback. The first one aimed at measuring their satisfaction with the seminar implementation and the identification of the benefits gained. The second one targeted at creating a message or comments about the seminar and the participants before the seminar ends.

Every day after the end of the sessions there was free time for participants to meet the Egyptian culture and explore Cairo and its famous landmarks, through several activities, such as a Nile cruise, a visit in the Pyramids, wandering in Moez street and Khan el Khalili (the old Cairo district), and exploring downtown Cairo and el Tahrir square.

The participants were fully engaged with the activities and showed great interest by stating high levels of satisfaction with the implementation and they were happy to share their thoughts and views about the program’s next steps. Regarding their comments for the seminar, all of them were positive that expressed their high satisfaction levels.


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