Jamie Taylor

Library of Best Practice

Entrepreneurship Capacity Building for Young Migrants

The project aims to promote the integration and social inclusion of young migrants in order to foster social cohesion in Europe.

Europe is facing an unprecedented wave of migration: European countries have become an immigration destination for many populations facing distress in their home countries. The economic integration of migrants is one of the priorities of the EU comprehensive approach to migration. It is crucial to empower migrants and refugees to develop the skills and to get access to knowledge and support schemes that can enable them to build a solid livelihood, and also to create added value. This should include the possibility of becoming entrepreneurs and thus contribute to further job creation. Entrepreneurship is one of the ways to ensure the integration and the economic independence of migrants.

The migration challenge can be turned into an opportunity to create more growth and jobs: Europe needs all its talents and migrant entrepreneurs represent a source of untapped potential for creation of new jobs. Already 6.6% of self-employed people in the European Union were born outside of their country of residence, which is more than 2 million people. Of these foreign-born self-employed people, 47% were born outside of the European Union. Some studies show that on average immigrants are more prone to set up their own business compared to EU citizens with a non-migrant background.

Entrepreneurship support services addressed to migrants are severely fragmented. They range from initial profiling and labour guidance, to education and training on entrepreneurship, knowledge about the local business environment, mentoring, networking with other entrepreneurs or access to credit. All these necessary steps to become a successful entrepreneur are usually scattered along many different organisations. In addition to this, migrants face specific challenges that are often disregarded in many general support institutions.

This project has the objective of helping migrants, especially the younger ones, to establish their own businesses, through the development of a scheme supplying with information, training and support.

The first necessary step is mapping the skills, experiences and aspirations of migrants, in particular of those newly arriving to the EU. Those who have the potential for, and interest in self-employment can be identified, while the others can be directed to other occupations depending on their profiles. This first screening should be followed by the accreditation of qualifications and by language training.

The project will also develop awareness-raising and outreach activities for migrants, giving them first-hand information about the opportunity of becoming an entrepreneur, and to provide potential migrant entrepreneurs with more specific information on support available for starting a business or any other project. Relevant cultural networks will be created or strengthened for this purpose.

Potential entrepreneurs with a migrant background will be supported through targeted business assistance, since they may face specific barriers due for instance to a lack of familiarity with the cultural, business and regulatory environment of the host country, or to a lack of networks.

The project aims to promote the integration and social inclusion of youth migrants in order to foster social cohesion in Europe.

• To raise awareness of the importance of social inclusion by providing youth migrants with practical knowledge about (social) entrepreneurship in general
• To empower youth workers to contribute to the values for immigrants integration, employment and social responsibility within local communities
• To exchange best immigrants entrepreneur practices and ideas
• To empower youth migrants to be able to start their own business by developing necessary skills and competencies related to online and offline business
• To develop non-formal educational tools to disseminate positive results of the project and create a booklet on “entrepreneurship for beginners”
• To empower youth workers through non-formal education tools to become better agents of immigrant integration and intercultural dialogue back in their home societies
• To understand social, cultural and economic difference between immigrants based in partners countries and to promote the values of respect, solidarity, inclusion, equality;
• To support youth migrants to increase their knowledge of their rights, and the service available to them

Target public:
Migrants: Legally-staying third-country nationals in the territory of the EU who can attend training activities according to the applicable legislation in the host country.
Young: 15-30 year-old