OPEN CALL FOR JOINING AN EUROPEAN SOLIDARITY CORPS PROJECT (ESC) AT KNOF!
| APPLICATIONS ARE CLOSED
| Check Info pack of Hosting organization here
| Duration: 240 days (June 2023 – January 2024)
The ESC project is an upgrade of the content that we have already implemented at KNOF in the past 13 years. One of the fundamental features of the project is the participation of young people in finding climate solutions and the promotion of transition to a green, circular economy. In our organization, ESC volunteers perform a variety of activities that have positive social and environmental impacts.
Through the process of finding solutions to environmental challenges, volunteers will gain skills and knowledge from the circular economy and social entrepreneurship. Alternative to standard entrepreneurship and mass consumption, and the main causes of climate change. Young people will think globally but take action locally in a small environment by creating solutions through project participation that will have positive effects directly on the local community.
KNOF is a pioneer in social entrepreneurship and circular economy in Slovenia with a mission to popularize sustainable lifestyle. With this purpose we are developing sustainable services and products that are replacing plastic or minimizing the waste. In this process we include also people with disabilities, volunteers and unemployed. Our slogan is business, shopping and society with a clear conscience. Our biggest project is Stara šola, reuse boutique. Currently we have 5 boutiques across Slovenia. The boutiques promote sustainable fashion, they help to reduce textile waste and they create new green jobs. We work closely with municipalities, waste companies and other enterprises to find (social) innovations that would decrease the production of waste, CO2 emissions and exploitation of natural resources.
- to make KNOF users and volunteers aware of the benefits of the principles of the circular economy and social entrepreneurship for the more sustainable development of society and nature, thus reducing the negative effects on the climate,
- expand knowledge of the circular economy and increase the number of circular business models,
- enable individuals, especially young people, to find a job on their own by creating new sustainable business models,
- empower young people as one of the vulnerable groups and other participants with competencies, skills, knowledge, and courage for entrepreneurship,
- promote selfless and socially responsible thinking and action, volunteering, solidarity and intergenerational cooperation,
- strengthen cooperation with the local community through workshops, events that promote solidarity with the environment.
At KNOF, we have many experiences from hosting volunteers from abroad who bring their freshness and ideas “out of the box” into the very foundation of the organization. The main reason we want to host ESC volunteers is that they give us enough new challenges and just enough encouragement and insight into how the Y and Z generations of Europe are thinking. ESC Volunteers become part of the core team of KNOF, along with them and we build our sustainable community with support organizations. In this way, we strengthen our capacities and at the same time give volunteers enough space to explore new areas of sustainable development and climate change with us.
KNOF has been hosting volunteers from abroad since 2011. To this day we have hosted 6 groups, a total of 13 volunteers. As a personal project, one of the volunteers created the first re-use store, “Stara šola” which opened its doors in 2011 in a village in Boštanj. Since then we have open our fifth Stara šola store and created more than 70 jobs. Of which almost a half came from the group of vulnerable, socially excluded, and hard-to-employ people (long-term unemployed, older than 50, young people without work experience, young people without completed education, disabled people…). Today KNOF has 10 employees and around 5-10 external coworkers. Most of us speak English. The staff is familiar with volunteering programs, because they worked with them in past ESC projects and also socialized with them outside work (visiting concerts and other events).
Currently we are running projects like:
- SALON of furniture with character – is a gallery of reused furniture, designer and vintage pieces which are restaurated, repaired, refreshed or upcycled in our furniture workshop. We also do upholstery.
- COLLECTION – collection of sustainable and second-hand items that oppose the trend of instant throw-away consumer culture
- STARA ŠOLA – vintage and second-hand fashion boutique
- PLASTIK FANTASTIK – Experimental technology for plastic recycling and new recycled products.
We have an interesting infrastructure spreading over 3.000 m2 in one of the oldest shopping malls in Slovenia, directed mostly in reuse of different waste materials (textile, plastic, wood). We call it Circular LAB, the first laboratory for circular economy. Currently we have this infrastructure running:
– Wood working workshop specialized in renovation of old furniture
– FabLab engineering workshop with CNC machine, laser machine, 3D printer, machines for shredding, extruding, pressing and shaping waste (plastic) into new products
– Sewing workshop for upholstery of furniture, production of textile products (zero-waste)
– Foto studio with basic equipment
– Office space
– Reuse boutique
– Storage space.
As a response to support the start-up of new sustainable businesses KNOF also runs a startup support programs: business mentorship, smaller coworking space, a FabLab workshop and a business incubator. KNOF plays an important role in informing about socially responsible entrepreneurship and circular economy.
KNOF social enterprise was funded by members from a youth organisation Društvo KNOF with a mission to create new sustainable jobs. In the year 2012 we got registrated as a social company. One of the first three in Slovenia, because we pursue principles of sustainable development, social responsibility and active citizenship.
KNOF is stationed in town Krško in one of the oldest shopping malls in Slovenia. Krško is located in Posavje region which has 75.000 population but is divided in 6 small municipalities and most of the region is rural. The ESC volunteers live in Sevnica in a nearby town.
| Trajanje: Junij 2022 – Januar 2023
Opis projekta Mladi za trajnostne rešitve:
Projekt je nadgradnja vsebin, ki smo jih v Zavodu KNOF že izvajali in so se izkazale za uspešne in hkrati prispevajo k ciljem Evropske solidarnostne enote ter poslanstvu vključenih organizacij. So pa tudi odgovor mednarodnega gibanja Mladih za podnebno pravičnost, ki je zajel svet in samo v Sloveniji na ulicah združil več kot 12.000 mladih.
Ena od temeljnih značilnosti projekta je politična participacija mladih pri iskanju podnebnih rešitev ter spodbujanju prehoda v zeleno, krožno gospodarstvo in zmanjševanje onesnaževanja planeta. V naši organizaciji prostovoljci opravljajo različne dejavnosti, ki imajo pozitiven družbeni in okoljski vpliv. Prostovoljci bodo tako preko procesa iskanja rešitev na okoljske izzive pridobili veščine in znanje iz krožnega gospodarstva in socialnega podjetništva. Alternative standardnemu podjetništvu in masovnemu potrošništvu, glavnemu vzroku podnebnih sprememb. Mladi bodo razmišljali globalno, vendar ukrepali lokalno, tako da bodo preko sodelovanja v projektu ustvarjali rešitve, ki bodo imele pozitivne učinke neposredno na lokalno skupnost.
- ozavestiti uporabnike in prostovoljce organizacije KNOF o prednostih ter načelih krožnega gospodarstva in socialnega podjetništva, za bolj trajnostni razvoj družbe in narave ter tako zmanjševanje negativnih posledic na podnebje,
- razširiti znanje o krožnem gospodarstvu in povečati število krožnih poslovnih modelov,
- omogočiti posameznikom, predvsem mladim, da si sami iz-najdejo službo preko oblikovanja novih poslovnih modelov,
- opolnomočiti mlade kot eno izmed ranljivih skupin ter druge sodelujoče s kompetencami, veščinami, znanji in pogumom za podjetništvo,
- spodbujati nesebično in družbeno odgovorno mišljenje ter delovanje, prostovoljstvo, solidarnost in medgeneracijsko sodelovanje,
- okrepiti sodelovanje z lokalno skupnostjo preko delavnic, dogodkov, ki promovirajo solidarnostno ravnanje z okoljem.