Launch of the ReSt@rts: A new project to facilitate access to finance for women, youth and vulnerable groups in the Mediterranean basin
The project ReSt@rts - Reinforcing Med Microfinance Network System for Start-ups, co-funded by the European Programme for cross-border cooperation with Mediterranean countries ENI CBC MED 2014-2020, was officially launched on 2nd December in Catanzaro, Italy.
The welcome speech was given by Mr. Roberto Cosentino, General Manager of the Department of Work of the Calabria Region. Following the official introduction, the programme overview was given by Mr. Vincent Ernoux - Coordinator for ENI CBC MED Branch Office for the Western Mediterranean, who underlined the importance of the programme and the project: "You are the bridge between the past and the future, we are waiting for your results with many expectations". Ernoux also added that access to funding for young people deserves a very specific treatment because of the different approaches that young people require, but the results will be a new inspiration for future programmes.
Successively, the ENI CBC MED 2014-2020 implementing rules were presented by Ms. Valeria
About the ReSt@rts
The ReSt@rts project is co-funded with € 1,106,559.76 by ENI CBC MED Programme and aims to increase employment opportunities for young people and improve the living conditions of the most vulnerable, facilitating access to finance. The objective of the intervention is to create a continuity with the previous project MEDSt@rts (https://www.enicbcmed.eu/projects/medstarts) with an approach inspired by the principles of ethical and solidarity finance and public-private collaboration, it is intended to bring support to subjects generally not bankable through the instruments of microfinance, with the structuring of a Marketplace platform and technical assistance service.
There are two main expected achievements in both the mid and long terms. On one hand, the project encourages the development of new products and non-financial services sold both in domestic and foreign markets, new jobs created, new services subcontracted, opening up of the labour market, and professionalization of skills through the training. On the other hand, it boosts the mobilization of endogenous potential by strengthening business sectors open to eco-innovation, green energy, and sustainable development.
The initiative, which will last 24 months, is led by the Arab-Italian Cooperation Chamber, and will involve as partners: Calabria Region (Italy), Chamber of Commerce of Achaia (Greece), Chamber of Commerce of Sfax (Tunisia), Ager Sarl (Tunisia), LEADERS (Palestine), Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture of Sidon and South Lebanon (Lebanon), Cyprus Chamber of Commerce (Cyprus), Federterziario (Italy) and as Associate Partner the ECN – European Crowdfunding Network AISBL.