Building inclusive communities through community-based entrepreneurship


The overall goal of the project is to develop, implement and test the “Welcomeship” model – a certain form of entrepreneurship learning for young people with fewer opportunities, including young migrants and local youth. The “Welcomeship” model is based on non-formal learning methods and collaborative practice. It strengthens the interaction of locals and newcomers, addresses the fears and prejudices, and fosters community spirit as an overarching goal. This project has been implementing in six European countries.

Local youth and young migrants develop entrepreneurial ideas which address community issues and build partnerships with stakeholders to bring about positive change in the local communities. This collaboration is intended to lead to openness, tolerance and an atmosphere of togetherness in the community.

Ultimately, the “Welcomeship” model aims at becoming a tool for inclusive communities. Community-based entrepreneurship is considered to be an important instrument for the realization of potential, especially amongst communities that are deprived, isolated and marginalized from the mainstream economy. It is a tool to increase social upliftment through shared cultural values, resources and trust, nurtured through close personal relations to create functioning economic activities.

In the Welcomeship project, we use the following definition of community-based entrepreneurship: Community-based entrepreneurship means that the entrepreneurial ideas of people are directly linked to the community they live in, belong to or feel connected to. These ideas arise from a situational analysis and reflect the needs and resources of the community. The ideas are implemented in collaboration with community stakeholders.

Community-based entrepreneurship fosters an entrepreneurial spirit, skills and competencies. It serves as a means of promoting active citizenship and inclusion while increasing social impact. The development of community-based entrepreneurship has helped society to tackle some of the most pressing issues.

Understanding innovation and entrepreneurship across different domains is essential in order to see the bigger picture. It is important to understand the role of different types of entrepreneurs in society. Many are familiar with the achievements of entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs or Richard Branson, however, how familiar are you with social entrepreneurs such as Muhammad Yunus and work that earned him a Nobel Prize?