Kick-off meeting of Sibrec project

7 partners from all around the Baltic Sea Region gathered in Riga for the first meeting of Sibrec project, which aims to collect solutions for social inclusion in ecovillages and trigger new partnerships. Lauris, from a Camphill-community in Estonia, represented BEN at the meeting.

Last month I got the opportunity to join the project called SIBREC, a networking project supported by Swedish Institute and coordinated by Relearn Suderbyn. In the project, there are different NGOs and Universities represented. One of them is the Baltic Ecovillage Network (BEN), through which I was one of the participants. Our topic is social inclusion, social entrepreneurship and how the ecovillage movement can contribute to this. The on-going project is a seed-project which aims to initiate new projects, applications or businesses.


Last month, we had our first meeting in Riga, Latvia. During the first day we had a practical introduction to our topic by visiting different Social Entrepreneurs in Latvia. On the second day the real work started with short lectures in the morning, topics were:

 -Social entrepreneurship in Latvia

 -Development of alternative social services in Latvia

 -Community development training program and inter-municipal working groups


In the afternoon we continued with workshop designing our own project. We got to know a bit more into detail the different partner organizations and their priorities. During this workshop we also decided not to narrow our focus to a particular group, but consider Social Inclusion holistically, as involvement of all groups into functioning society. Such groups can be people with mental and physical disabilities, children with learning difficulties, immigrants and refugees, rural youth, burnt out people, etc.


Next official project meeting will be from 13th till 16th of April in St.Petersburg.


In case you want to join our network and be informed about the project, you are welcome to write me.


Lauris lives and works in a community of young adults with learning disabilities. The community is called Maarja Küla and is located in the South-East of Estonia. In the same time he is very interested in the ecovillage movement and sustainable life.