SEMPRE Accelerators supports eight so-called micro projects on their path towards becoming mature and sustainable social start-ups. One of our tools to accelerate this process are the so-called Accelerator Teams (ATs): While the start-ups are owned and developed by the service users themselves, they are supported by a small group of selected social service providers and micro project members who facilitate the process.
The AT of our social start-up AllDi (Single parents in Dithmarschen) met for a weekend seminar at the conference and education centre in Breklum (Christian-Jensen-Kolleg), on the North Sea coast. The focus of the training workshop was team building. We worked with creative tools, which were introduced by our tutor, Daniela Forner. Daniela had prepared a good mix of group work, formal input and reflection. Practical exercises helped identify challenges (such as communication) and work on solutions. The AT worked hard on future visions for their micro-project. One idea which shaped up clearly was that of an AllDi-Café as a barrier-free drop-in centre where families are welcome. Connected with the café idea was the vision that the AllDi logo (lighthouse) will be well known all over the district of Dithmarschen, signposting single parents to the AllDi association (now the AllDi micro-project).
The conference centre provided an excellent and relaxed working atmosphere, including child care. Even family dogs were allowed onto the premises. Such support structures are essential for productive learning environments for single parents. The workshop results will feed into the scheduled AT meetings and contribute to implement the AT work in practice.
Apart from the immediate impact on work results, we want to underline the relevance of this workshop weekend for the group dynamic, solidarity and social coherence of the AT. This weekend is an excellent example of practised empowerment!