YFEP is a Strategic Partnership project aimed at developing an entrepreneurial mindset and related skills in young women with a weak socioeconomic background.

The inspiration for the YFEP project is the ongoing EU challenge of enhancing the entrepreneurial spirit of young women, increasing business creation rates and providing alternative pathways of employability and, most of all, young women’s personal fulfilment. The challenges that women identify in starting a business include discouraging social/cultural attitudes, lower levels of entrepreneurship skills, smaller and less effective entrepreneurial networks and policy frameworks that discourage women’s entrepreneurship. Instruments traditionally used to address these barriers (training and grants) have oftentimes had limited success and need to be better calibrated to the target group’s needs.

The project partners are The NEST Social Cooperative Enterprise from Greece, Cyprus Organization for Sustainable Education and Active Learning (SEAL Cyprus) from Cyprus, MV International from Italy, AREGAI Terre di Benessere Associazione Culturale from Italy and West Lothian Chamber of Commerce Limited (WL Chamber) from Scotland.

The YFEP approach aims at offering young women with the motivation to start a business (alone or with others,) an all-in-one program (online contents and tools, workshops, group activities, multimeter support, …) in enlarging their knowledge on entrepreneurship, sustainable management, improve attitudes and foster skills needed to initiate and manage an enterprise, and most of all, empower them with the support of a multi-mentor program.

In order to reach this wide aim, the consortium is going to :

-combine the competences and knowledge of the 6 partners, to build a MULTI-DISCIPLINARY GROUP working to solve the common issues, by consolidating and expanding the existing local ecosystem, and equipping them to support the target group during the proposed activities in the 24-month long partnership
– modify the EYP program this project is based upon, adding specific elements (multi-mentoring program, entrepreneurial education, how to involve and talk with families) and having it assessed
during the common training,
– select and involve 25 mentors among the partners’ wide number of contacts to improve the proposed multi-mentor program and ensure adequate support during the
– prepare and test a training course aimed at increasing competences and skills in 15 TRAINERS appointed by participating organizations to instruct 50 YOUTH WORKERS in the use of the YFE program and increasing their
– elaborate a new way to increase young women transversal skills and boost their self-confidence and test it with 100 young women, selected at local level by the partners, during the 8-month pilot activity

A transnational project is needed because a joint approach might be more effective to tackle common social issues related to NEET and youth unemployment, female unemployment in particular. The collaborative community development model can be beneficial to foster better local network. The multi-mentors individual and all-around support offered by the program has the final aim of boosting motivation and guide participants in planning their business step-by-step. The partners will select female professionals with different specialization (finance, marketing, sales, HR management, Business plan writing, business planning, time management…) and sharing with the participants the existing links to potential clients and suppliers, in order to create a fully functioning and structured support network. In this way, young participants will be empowered and nurtured by senior female professionals with a wide range of expertise and professional background. The activities are
performed via a communication and learning platform equipped to facilitate cooperation and communication among all involved parts.
The results of this project will be, all multilingual: a training course for youth workers and trainers of youth workers, to be tested during weeklong staff mobility; a guidebook and tools to be used by young women with a business idea and the motivation to implement it, a protocol to engage
stakeholders and specialists and motivate them in supporting the young participants, a manual for specialists and experts (women in particular) willing to learn mentoring and coaching techniques and support actively the young participants in their development path.