BIOLOC: Creating Economic and Social Opportunities for Marginalised Groups

22. Apr. 2024

We are happy to share the progress and impact of the BIOLOC hubs across twelve European regions.

BIOLOC aims to address the distinct requirements of marginalized communities in every region. The hubs throughout Europe have taken on different approaches, focusing on specific groups and employing innovative strategies to drive social and economic change.

Empowering Rural Communities: The Bulgarian and Croatian Hubs Lead the Way

In the Plovdiv region of Bulgaria, our hub is committed to empowering segments of the rural population by equipping individuals with the skills they need to successfully join the biobased industries workforce through education and qualification programs. Similarly, in the Croatian hub is tackling energy poverty within rural populations. By involving family farms in the circular bioeconomy, we are open doors to additional income, market opportunities, and
reduced costs for affected families.

Inclusivity and Education: Czech Republic, Germany, and Greece Make Strides

The Czech Republic hub focuses on Roma communities and unemployed young people, paving the way to unlocking the social and economic benefits of active participation in the CBE. In Germany’s Baden-Württemberg, the hub provides education and training on the circular bioeconomy to NEETS, thus opening new employment opportunities. In Western Macedonia, Greece, the hub prioritises people with disabilities, enhancing their skills and employability in the bioeconomy sector while promoting inclusivity within the industry.

Promoting Market Opportunities: Hungary, Italy, and the Netherlands Take Action

The Hungarian hub is developing social interventions to improve winter heating efficiency for peripheral rural settlements, particularly the Roma ethnic minority. The aim of Italy’s Campania region is to increase knowledge and networks in the bioeconomy sector for agro-forestry workers and livestock farmers with limited access to education and market opportunities.
In Apeldoorn, the Dutch hub supports socially endangered individuals who need help in daily life, offering them structure, connections, and language skills through the “Kitchen Garden Havenkwartier” project.

Environmental Solutions: Romania and Slovakia hubs

The hub in Romania is diving into environmental challenges by advancing the role of circular bioeconomy for soil remediation, thus contributing to reversing the harmful effects of pollutants in areas with a high density of chemical industries and fossil-based power plants.
Slovakia’s hub involves small farmers, homeless people, and the Roma minority in bioeconomy activities, empowering them to be part of this transformative sector in the Nitra region.

Unleashing Potential: Slovenia and Spain Empower the Future

BIOLOC seeks to foster pathways for young individuals enrolled in professional schools to access employment opportunities within the bioeconomy sector, enabling them to gain valuable industry experience by collaborating with relevant companies. In the Aragón region of Spain, the hub is dedicated to addressing the low presence of women in rural salaried activities and migration issues. They empower women over 40 with lower education backgrounds, unlocking their potential in the bioeconomy sector.

Uniting for Change: The Power of Collaboration

BIOLOC hubs are committed to driving change through coordinated participatory approaches and cooperation. The Centre for Social Innovation, (ZSI), coaches hubs to deliver tailored solutions for maximized local impact by applying replicable methodologies and scalable techniques.

Sharing Knowledge, Inspiring Progress
Regular online meetings between the hubs facilitate the exchange of findings, best practices, and discussions on challenges. The BIOLOC project is poised to make a significant impact on vulnerable segments of society by facilitating their integration into the circular bioeconomy. This collaborative
and inclusive initiative showcases the transformative power of working together towards a more inclusive society.

Tags: Bioeconomy, CommunityDevelopment, InclusiveOpportunities, MarginalizedVoicesRise, RuralEmpowerment