Brussels, April 19, 2023 – Yesterday, April 18, 2023, the conference “A Local Strategy for the Social Economy Action Plan” took place in Brussels, organized by The Community Foundation of Agrigento and Trapani.
The event was held within the framework of the latest Social Mission of the BREED project “Building community REsiliencE and sustainable Development through the social economy,” currently being implemented under the coordination of The Community Foundation of Agrigento and Trapani. The project is co-financed by the European Commission through the COSME program and aims to promote the development of the social economy in local communities in Europe. Activities involve organizations and local authorities from different Mediterranean countries (Italy, Spain, Greece, Portugal) currently facing similar issues and challenges (such as unemployment, lack of social services, etc.) and aims to support European economic resilience in the post-pandemic era by strengthening the skills of public and private entities in the field of social economy, inter-institutional cooperation, and innovation. In Italy, the reference territory for the experimentation is the province of Trapani with the Municipality of Alcamo.
The event saw the participation of various guests from the European academic, philanthropic, and institutional world, starting with the representative of the European Council’s Executive Agency for Innovation and Small and Medium Enterprises (EISMEA), Marta Nuche Castellanos, who opened the works, stressing that promoting social inclusion and inclusive growth is one of the main pillars of the European Union’s development strategy.
Following was Carola Carazzone, Vice-President of Philea – Philanthropy Europe Association, who stated that “community foundations in Europe represent great potential for the development of the social economy thanks to four common elements identified: they create strong ties with local communities, represent cultural and intellectual heritage, guarantee trust thanks to their reliability and transparency, and above all, sit at the table in a different way, as they use different types of resources, not just financial ones.”
Among the speakers was also Ana Umbelino, President of REVES: European Network of Cities and Regions for the Social Economy – who emphasized that “the economic, ecological, and social crisis we are experiencing requires a transition to a development model capable of producing while respecting human rights and the environment. To do this, it is necessary to promote: a multi-level governance model, integrated with structured dialogue with communities, access to public funds to support welfare, connections between schools and third-sector organizations in order to create new professional careers.”
Concluding the works was Mauro Magatti, Economist and Sociologist at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart and member of the Community Foundation’s Steering Committee, who underlined that “the environmental and social problems we are facing are entropic. Social generativity is a paradigm capable of activating syntropic processes able to counteract entropic effects. Therefore, it is necessary to replace the concept of care with that of exploitation and the concept of contribution with those of production and consumption. To do this, it is necessary to promote intergenerational transition in order to enhance the long-term vision through a profound reform of the current educational system.”
Also present at the meeting was the President of the Community Foundation, Pietro Basiricò, who stated that “the Community Foundation is a facilitator and a catalyst for human and financial resources capable of promoting the co-design of interventions that can support the sustainable and inclusive development of our communities. Indeed, a community is healthy and grows in prosperity if it is composed of people who value and take care of it.”
The event was sponsored by Philea – Philanthropy Europe Association and was organized with the support of Confcooperative Brussels.
Contacts: Mariacristina Morsellino email@example.com