S project

S project: S academy - creating opportunuties for young

Ajdovscina, SloveniaAjdovscina, Slovenia
Year Founded:
2012
Organization type: 
hybrid
Project Stage:
Growth
Budget: 
$50,000 - $100,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

S academy is an innovative educational model, that provides training for unemployable young aged between 18 and 25 without concluded education and working experiences. In 6 months training they gain knowledge and experience to become employable and independent.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

What if there was a global training program that would provide knowledge and experience and give a second chance for young to get a job and become independent.
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Raising number (between 5 and 6.000 in 2013) of young aged between 18 and 25, who did not finish their education and are unable to find a suitable employment and are therefore faced with the possibility of long term unemployment and social exclusion. All of which is usually the consequence of their unfavorable life situation. Lack of effective government programs to address this issue.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Creating of a training program, that would provide useful knowledge and needed experiences to become competitive in a job market. School leavers need comprehensive approach to keep them motivated and goal oriented. They need intensive training to change their lifestyle and give them organizational, working, business, communicational and behavioral skills. That is why we created S academy. It helps participants to involve different, in real life needed and useful both professional and personal skills. Basic knowledge is focust on culinary skills, but program also covers basic economics knowledge and personal growth.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

David is 22 years old unemployed school leaver. He lives with younger brother and unemployed mother on social welfare. He wants to help but doesn’t know where to start. David is accepted to S academy where he learns basic cooking skills, works on personal growth, gets trained how to behave at job interview and the most important – gets experience in restaurant. S academy provides environment from which participants can get the most out of it – from business to personal skills. He is provided accommodation and food within six months and some pocket money during training. After finishing S academy David has knowledge, skills and experience to get national vocational qualification and become employable.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

In two years we have carried out two six-month generations of S academy. Of 13 participants who have finished S academy, 5 have their first employment. And considering their family backgrounds they make sufficient contribution to families’ welfare. S academy doesn’t give them fish. But it teaches them how to fish. S project is creating opportunities for young. On the other hand S project runs three restaurants that provide funds for S academy and also platform for practical training of S academy participants. S restaurants currently employ 27 people. Three restaurants are located in commercial buildings and are providing meals for employees. Our mission is to serve healthy and balanced meals, what has a long-term positive impact to their health. S restaurants serve app. 1.000 meals per day.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

Our aim is to apply our model onto other (international) markets with our partners. Our other plans for improvements are: - adapt the program so more young can be involved - introduce new programs (besides cooking) for other professions - apply our education model to other (international) markets - prove that existing programs for encouraging employment within young don’t work - create opportunities for more young
Sustainability

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Within S project we have developed sustainable business model. S project is currently running three restaurants – they are all located in commercial buildings of our partners. S project doesn’t own any real estate or kitchen equipment, so no big investment is needed when opening restaurant. In restaurants practical part of S academy takes place. All profit made in restaurants is funding S academy. Costs for one generation is 60.000,00EUR.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

While S academy does not have any immediate competitors within our market, there are a number of organizations that act as peers in providing informal education for chef assistants in aim to contribute to employment of vulnerable groups. These are: Gostilna dela and Kafenava and also Employment service of Slovenia with their courses. They differ from S project in that their courses are based only on strictly culinary skills, but Young without formal education and experiences need much more than just that. They need intensive training to change their lifestyle and give them needed skills.
Team

Founding Story

In Slovenia we detect raising number of unemployment of Young between 18 and 24 years. This trend is devastating along with negative economic indicators. Generating added value and new opportunities for Young generation is crucial. Team of young enthusiasts decided to leave their capitalist jobs and start working in a field that inspires them and do something positive for society. S project started creating opportunities for young and giving them second chance to become independent and start building their life.

Team

Team: Matevz Slokar - founder and director (new business development, financial manager, restaurants manager) Ana Strnad - marketing manager, communication and social media coordinator, Head of S academy, project manager Anja Lazar - financial manager, project coordinator, project manager, event manager Branko Koren - advisor Blaz Mehle - restaurant manager Dejan Zore - restaurant manager
About You
About You
First Name

Matevz

Last Name

Slokar

About Your Project
Organization Name
How long has your organization been operating?

Project
Organization Country

, Ajdovscina

Country where this project is creating social impact

, Ajdovscina

What awards or honors has the project received?
Funding: How is your project financial supported?

Businesses, Customers.

Supplemental
Sector

Inclusive Business.

Audience: Who have you identified as your customer/recipient groups and do these groups value your solution for different reasons? How do you engage different customer/recipient groups to deliver your solution?

Recipients are all potential employers of our students (restaurants).
We indicate a big potential for involving them as partners in our educational process (mentors to students, to give students opportunity to work at their restaurant for a week (more diverse experiences), and to employ them after they finish education). But currently market is quite unpredictable so we are still in a search for the optimal solution for that manner.

Scaling the solution: How would the prize money and publicity help you to achieve your objectives over the next two years?

Considering that we are funding S academy by ourselves (with profits made in restaurants), we are understaffed to develop our model to its full potential and test it on some other markets. We are already in the process of carrying it out in Italy and Croatia. Our goal is to create a basic model that can be with small adaptations executed in different countries. And for that we need dedicated stuff that can work on the project full time.
We are trying to build a sustainable model that will have bigger impact than just employed person. We want to help people who want a change but have no one to teach them how. Instead of giving them fish, we teach them fishing.

Experience: Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered

Matevz Slokar started his career as entrepreneur at 18 when he opened his first restaurant. He was always hyperactive and just a year later he in his friends decided to organize a music festival to bring their town to life. Njoki Festival was on for few years, when he decided to get more experience – he took a job as a production manager in advertising agency. After a year there S project was born.

Are you are eligible to attend the Accelerator event in Cambridge and subsequent events in London, UK in January, 2015?

yes

Will you require a visa to enter the UK?

yes

Are you are a current Unilever employee?