The Atlantic Cities Association (ACA) has noted difficulties of access to employment for young people in the Atlantic Arc. The unemployment rate is increasing in the 5 Atlantic countries. With the “Atlantic Futures” programme, ACA is taking advantage of the international dimension to strengthen the entrepreneurial spirit and autonomy of young people; either with experience at our premises or with support for their entrepreneurial projects.
With this second component, ACA allows young people to acquire autonomy and transversal skills in an interesting, motivating, safe and adapted environment. The goal is to better promote their talents, reinforced by the attractiveness of the international world. In this sense, Atlantic Futures is developing three main actions under different sources of financing.
At first, between 2018 and 2020, Atlantic Futures was partner at the EYE programme, a transnational exchange programme that allows young and future entrepreneurs to work with business leaders in other European Union countries.
Moreover, co-financed by the INTERREG Atlantic Area programme, the Atlantic Youth Creative Hubs (AYCH) is a transnational project developed by the Atlantic Cities Association counting with 14 partners from 4 countries. The initiative aims to encourage young people of all origins from 16 to 30 years old, the wish to become entrepreneur in areas such as industry, culture or creativity.
Finally, the She4Sea project is a campaign created in 2016 by Atlantic Cities. The project aims to promote work in the maritime sector among young people and, in particular, women, since they are underrepresented in this environment. To this end, She4Sea offers women the opportunity to share their stories and bring to light the problems they face.
Many of the candidates have seen their experience with Atlantic Futures as a boost to their projects. Thus, this programme of Atlantic Cities has been recognized at national level by BPI France, a reference in the EEPA contest. This contest is addressed to promote the best mechanisms giving support to entrepreneurship and business. Only two projects per country are submitted to the European contest.
The Atlantic Cities application has been selected at the national level and sent to the European Commission for its subsequent selection process. A European jury will meet in September to study the applications submitted by different member states. A short list will then be published before the official announcement of the winners which will be awarded at the SME Assembly on 16th and 17th November in Berlin.