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Supporting social change: opportunities for youth entrepreneurship through crowdfunding

by EUROCROWD on 25.05.2023

On 26 April 2023 EUROCROWD organised a conference in Brussels to discuss access to finance and training for youth entrepreneurship. The event fed directly into the work of European Commission under DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion and the OECD, and showcased the results of INCrowd, a joint activity co-financed by the European Commission. The aim of the two-year project work under the name INCrowd was to empower young adults from disadvantaged backgrounds by equipping them with the necessary tools and knowledge to launch successful crowdfunding campaigns. By harnessing the potential of crowdfunding, we sought to overcome financial barriers that often hinder the pursuit of innovative ideas among young adults.

Within this context, EUROCROWD has worked over the past two years with other European organisations and crowdfunding platforms, such as our members Zaar, Fondazione Fenice and Growfunding, in order to design and deliver an acceleration programme for young entrepreneurs across four EU Member States. The results of our work show that fostering inclusion and empowering young adults from disadvantaged backgrounds can be supported by crowdfunding. Over two years we helped youth entrepreneurs in Belgium, Malta, Croatia, and Italy and achieved an impressive success rate of 81.25% across 29 crowdfunding campaigns. The potential of this work for future improvements in access to finance policies and practices for young entrepreneurs is evident, with the development of already four additional crowdfunding campaigns scheduled for late 2023 and early 2024.

“The insights and results emerged from this pilot programme have provided tangible proof of what was anticipated by EUROCROWD already two years ago: crowdfunding can improve access to finance not only for established startups and SMEs, but it is also a most powerful mechanism to widen the pool of potential entrepreneurs who contribute to innovation, job creation and social cohesion in the EU. Our objectives as representatives of this sector are fully aligned with those of EU and international institutions, and we are grateful for their ongoing and continued support to our work.” Francesca Passeri, Deputy Director of EUROCROWD

Francesca Passeri, Deputy Director of EUROCROWD

The conference, serving as an opportunity for knowledge exchange and networking, brought together policy makers, young entrepreneurs, crowdfunding platforms, and other stakeholders to discuss the transformative power of non-formal education in promoting entrepreneurship and enhancing employability among young citizens.

A comprehensive review of the results, methodology, applied training courses and impact evaluation was presented and distributed to relevant stakeholders during the conference and will serve as a blueprint for repetition in new markets. EUROCROWD will be happy to engage with any interested parties in identifying relevant potential for local support of the support and promotion of youth entrepreneurship. For more information please contact us.