Sustainable student companies in Croatian high schools – green enterprises promote entrepreneurial thinking and actions among young people in Croatia

After two successfully completed projects – “Take Part in Sustainable Development” (2013–2015) and “Students Learn About Civic Engagement – Service-Learning in Nature and Environmental Protection” (2016 – 2018), the goal of which was to educate and empower young people for civic participation as well as to inspire voluntary action in the area of environmental protection, a third project, Sustainable Student Enterprises in Croatian High Schools – Green Enterprises Promote Entrepreneurial Thinking and Actions Among Young People in Croatia, began on January 1, 2020 in partnership with the German institution Deutsche Gesellschaft für Umwelterziehung (DGU). The project is financed by the German foundation for environmental protection—The Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt (DBU), which is one of Europe’s largest foundations that promote innovative environmental projects.

The goals of the project are integrating sustainability into the field of student entrepreneurship as well as promoting a sustainable entrepreneurial spirit in high schools in Croatia. Thus the project focuses on nurturing competences that can support a sustainable economy.

The objectives of the project are:

– Establishing and developing sustainable student enterprises in high schools.

– Raising awareness about sustainability and sustainable student behaviour.

– Promoting an entrepreneurial spirit and a professional orientation with a focus on environmentally friendly and socially just management.

In order to achieve the project goals set, the following activities are expected:

1.Analysis of positive practices of sustainable student enterprises in primary schools in Croatia as well as of implementation methods for high schools.

2.Visit to sites of good practice in Germany. A meeting and an exchange of opinions with selected sustainable student enterprises.

3.Workshop cycle / Educational programme for professors and students on the topic of characteristics and structure of sustainable student enterprises, business idea and model development, finances of sustainable student enterprises.

4.Visit to a factory that works according to the principles of sustainability.

5.Training and use of the kiosk of Association Marjan in Marjan Forest Park. For the duration of the project, the kiosk will be used for selling products from the sustainable student enterprises that are part of the project whereas after the project completion the kiosk will be open to other student enterprises too.

6.The project results will be documented and published in a practical manual, which in collaboration with the Croatian Association of School Cooperatives will be made available to other high schools in Croatia.

The total value of the project is is 132.761,86 euros, out of which 66,330,00 euros are secured by DBU and the remaining 66.431,86 euros are covered by Association Sunce.

In the school year 2021/2022 project is co-financed by the Ministry of Science and Education. From October 26th 2021, the project Green Student Enterprises – entrepreneurial thinking and actions is approved for implementation.

Project manager: Margita Radman, mag. biol. et oecol.,

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