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Sustainable Communities Incubator Partnership Programme
Start date: Sep 1, 2015, End date: Aug 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

Rationale A growing amount of civil initiatives and grassroots movements all over Europe is creating innovative sustainable projects and new lifestyles in their transition to a more just, sustainable and resilient future. Creating a low carbon society needs active engagement of civil society. This project aims to assist and support groups starting community-led sustainable projects with an adult education response, especially in terms of social skills as it turns out that many projects are failing due to lack of the necessary social and group communication skills. The project is created in response to a need for such increased levels of awareness and collaborative practice to spark change and development in a specific, sustainable direction. This project addresses the need for an integrated approach in Education for Sustainable Development that blends ecological, economic, social and cultural aspects in a balanced way. Partnership The nine organisations that form SCIPP represent large groups of sustainable communities and grassroots initiatives throughout Europe. All project partners are active in the field of adult education for sustainable development in which ecological, economical, social and cultural aspects are integrated in a holistic approach. The partnership is based on shared, converging interests within change processes in response to increasingly interconnected global challenges. The partners are GEN-Europe (lead partner), RIE (Spain), RIVE (Italy), Trajnostni Park Istra (Slovenia), GEN NL (Netherlands), MTÜ Eesti Ökokogukondade Ühendus (GEN Estonia), LØS (Denmark), Fundacja "Ogrody Permakultury" (Poland) and GEN International (UK). Sustainable Communities Incubator - Educational material and trainings In the project training material from all partner countries will be gathered and brought together in an open source incubator framework. Four of the partners have been involved in the development of the Ecovillage Design Education. The Italian and Spanish partners have further developed national programmes to assist the development of new projects, communities and eco-initiatives. In a series of six transnational meetings the existing training materials will be transformed in a collective and co-creative way into an Incubator Framework for Incubator Training and a supplementary TOT (training of trainers). Besides these training materials a comprehensive ICT e-learning platform will be created to back up the Incubator Framework. This will include an innovative support system for online consultancy. Dissemination The project results will be disseminated through the wider networks of the partners consisting of networks of ecological communities, on both local, regional, national, European and international levels by utilizing existing channels, both internal and external. The project partners will provide a valuable and legitimate contribution to the adult education sector, but add a more innovative and entrepreneurial dimension in also wider green business circles. At a regional and local level the project will provide incubator trainings to local rural and urban communities. The project and materials will also be presented nationally to relevant stakeholders, like adult education providers within the non formal education sector, but also to universities, research institutes and students, to municipalities and decision making bodies, NGO’s with similar goals. As the organisations have strong links on both European and in some cased international level, the project and the produced materials will be presented on an European and international scale at international events. Target groups Target groups of the partnership are 1) the facilitators, trainers and consultants that will actively engage in the partnership and the trainees of the pilot incubator training, 2) trainers, educators and facilitators active in the field of ESD, 3) people from urban and rural sustainable communities and initiatives, traditional communities and villages, ecovillages, cohousing projects and ecological quarters, 4) green and social entrepreneurs and 5) other relevant stakeholders such as research institutes and universities, municipalities, decision makers and other government bodies as well as (international) NGO’s active in sustainable development. Special target groups will be people in disadvantaged and rural areas and green and social entrepreneurs. Outcome of the project The outcomes of this project will strengthen community-led projects all over Europe by spreading access and knowledge about innovative tools for community building and social project design. It will provide a better understanding of participatory structures towards cooperative thinking approaches and co-creation attitudes and a network approach of thinking and doing in the creation of projects.

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