The My Site project promoted entrepreneurship amongst immigrant and local youth (under 30 years old) as a means of livelihood, integration and inclusion. The project conducted research on the needs of young entrepreneurs in participating countries (Cyprus, Greece, Italy, Malta and Spain), and provided immigrant and local youth entrepreneurs with tailored training and mentoring. The project was funded by the European Union Erasmus+ programme.
The project aimed to promote entrepreneurship as a pathway to employment for youth in general as well as integration for immigrant youth. To do so, the programme brought together immigrant and local youth to learn the basics of entrepreneurship and explore entrepreneurship opportunities for themselves. Addressing both youth populations at the same time aims to create linkages and contribute to social inclusion.
The My Site project was organised in three phases over 2018-19. In a first phase, research was conducted on the needs of young entrepreneurs. This research component involved interviews with experts and young entrepreneurs to develop an overview of the legal, political and institutional conditions as well as the barriers for entrepreneurship faced by local and immigrant youth in the five participating countries. In a second phase, entrepreneurship training was offered free of charge to immigrants, asylum seekers, refugees and local youth through in-person workshops in the participating countries and online. The workshops covered a range of topics (e.g. finding a market, developing a business plan, starting a venture, accessing finance, management and marketing) and ranged from 3-day workshops to 5-week programmes. They were developed based on the findings of the research component of the project. Participants received a certificate of participation. In a third phase, participants were paired with a mentor to work on their own business ideas. Mentors helped participants identify market opportunities, refine their project and prepare for the potential risks. Mentors were established entrepreneurs who were familiar with the relevant business fields.
The project produced reports on entrepreneurship opportunities and support available in each country for local and immigrant youth over its 18-month duration. This included a comparative report and recommendations for creating a better entrepreneurship environment for immigrant and local youth in Europe. The entrepreneurship training sessions typically supported around 20 local and immigrant youths in each country. The training materials were made available online to allow their further utilisation after project completion.
- The People for Change Foundation (2020), “My Site”, www.pfcmalta.org/my-site-migrant-and-youth-social-inclusion-through-entrepreneurship.html.
- Aequitas (2019), “My Site Strategic Partnership”, www.aequitas-humanrights.org/portfolio/mysite-strategic-partnership/.
- SolidarityNow (2019), »My Site event” , https://www.solidaritynow.org/en/mysiteevent/.
- Asociacion Socio Educativa Llere (2018), “Proyecto My-Site Erasmus +”, https://llere.org/proyecto-my-site-erasmus/
- Asociacion Socio Educativa Llere (2019), “My-Site (Migrant and Youth Social Inclusion through Entrepreneurship), Erasmus+ KA2”, https://llere.org/my-site-migrant-and-youth-social-inclusion-through-entrepreneurship-erasmus-ka2/
- S.F.Or. Centro Studi Formazione Orientamento (2019), “My Site”, www.cesfor.net/progetto/my-site/.