On July 17-20 2018 in Kaliningrad, Russia took place another three-day study visit as part of our project “Development of social entrepreneurship in the Baltic Sea Region” co-financed by The Nordic Council of Ministers and The Nordic Council. The Polish side was represented by four people: an employee of the Gdańsk University of Technology, a teacher of the elementary school in Niepoczołowice, an employee of the drama theatre in Elbląg and a student of the Gdańsk University of Technology and at the same time a volunteer of BISER.
The main focus of the study visit program were meetings with Russian social entrepreneurs. During the entire stay, participants had the opportunity to visit over 10 companies. Among them were:
Vorota – a place that stimulates the sense of the art of the Kaliningrad’s inhabitants. It is used in the historic gate to create space for art. There you can exhibit your works, organize literary meetings and take advantage of the free wi-fi and catering offer. The place is open and adapted to the needs of local residents.
Danke Shop (http://danke-shop.ru/ or https://www.facebook.com/dankeshopkld/ ) – the business idea was born automatically. It transformed from a charity organization that collected (and continues to collect) things for the people in need. Currently, the store
collects clothing, part of which it gives to the poor, and some sell in its store.
Observer (https://o-mp.ru/) – a social enterprise that manufactures and sells worldwide equipment for people with disabilities. The owner of the company (who is also in a wheelchair) is Roman Aranin. Implementing its project was aimed at facilitating the lives of disabled people by improving the availability of public places (for example access to the beach or improving
g infrastructure in Kaliningrad) and employment of disabled people (at least 30% of employees move in wheelchairs). For his achievements, he was awarded the Social Entrepreneur of the Year.
Zelenoye Delo (http: //xn--d1abaabh3aeoke.xn--p1ai/) – the owner of the company is Oleg Paukoff, who wants to improve the world by better protection of the environment. His dream is that his grandchildren and great-grandchildren may still be living in the beautiful world. His social enterprise is collecting rubbish from Kaliningrad residents and sorting
them. Sorted waste goes to other companies where they are recycled and reused to new products.
The study visit opened my eyes and inspired me very much, I think all of us, to work
for social entrepreneurship. Personal meetings with the owners of such social companies motivate to do something similar or transform existing companies into social enterprises in our country. The visit brought a large dose of practical knowledge that we will be happy to pass on in our environment. Especially for us, these were interesting meetings, because the subject of social enterprises in Poland is just beginning to be visible – says the Polish team – We would also like to thank the Russian coordinators who took care of us and organized every detail to make us feel the best.
Visited social enterprises:
- Hobby Tur (facebook.com/hobbytur )
- Danke Shop (http://danke-shop.ru)
- Krauslab entrepreneurship programme (Baltic Federal University)
- Observer (https://o-mp.ru/)
- Akademia Genivev (a-genio.ru)
- Our Future Foundation
- Altes Haus museum (http://alteshaus.ru/)
- Zelenoye Delo (http://xn--d1abaabh3aeoke.xn--p1ai/)
- Fort Donhoff (https://fortdonhoff.ru/)
Thanks go to our COBUCE partners for such a welcome reception!