“RevenYouth LAB” (RYLAB) is a 24-month Strategic Partnership Youth involving two NGOs from Spain and Italy and one higher education institution from Croatia (tertiary level) with the aim of fostering transition to autonomy and employability/entrepreneurial engagement in the field of Social Entrepreneurship of disadvantaged NEETs aged 18-25.

The project sets itself to achieve the aforementioned core objective by means of capitalizing on the dimension of self-employability education of young people through a set of methodologies the role and potential of Design Thinking, Personal Branding and Coaching in Business Management, in combination with Non-Formal Education, as mutually reinforcing components of a comprehensive and progressive approach to entrepreneurial empowerment.

RY LAB is grounded on the long-lasting cooperation among European promoter entities and on their joint assessment regarding the challenges faced by young people with fewer opportunities like NEETs in the wider purpose of promoting employability alongside learning, training and labour mobility with a view to facilitating transition to the realm of employability as well as between different kinds of jobs, levels and types of education and training.

Unemployment, social exclusion and deprivation of education as well as personal development opportunities affecting the sensitive NEET band of the European youth have grown to be a major area of concern for public authorities, NGOs, and stakeholder entities at the different levels. Within the youth population, young NEETs are one of the most vulnerable targets due to the additional multifaceted sets of constraints and development challenges posed by educational gaps as well as psychological and background-related barriers.

The partial inability of formal education and participation circuits to fill gaps in employability, personal development, and participation opportunities is a crucial factor in hampering the development of skills and knowledge, which would allow NEETs to achieve personal fulfilment, empowerment, and added value and skills.

In this context, the development of innovative comprehensive approaches targeted at developing social entrepreneurship capacities in NEETs offers promising prospects of addressing the issue of skills mismatch, exclusion from participation, and employability opportunities, while at the same time enhancing the social clout of youngsters as providers of added social value to host communities.

Furthermore, the European Commission, in its “Entrepreneurship 2020 Action Plan” highlighted the added value of actions which aim to ensure development and improvement of the socio-economic situation of NEETs, providing them with opportunities of entrepreneurial learning and engagement.

RY LAB will deliver on the priority of fostering social inclusion, employability, and community-oriented personal development of young NEETs through a coordinated partnered effort. They will identify, collect, and improve existing good practices, share successfully tested methods internally to their organizations, and develop high quality educational support schemes to socially oriented entrepreneurship to be tested in real situations, and ultimately, spread as a successful model in the wider community of youth operators, trainers, organizations, and stakeholders.

The above-mentioned aim will be achieved through a self-contained and purposeful flow of research activities, meetings, and learning activities. RY LAB approach to entrepreneurial empowerment is grounded on a pondered combination of the following tools: – Design Thinking. Design methodology that provides a solution-based approach to solving problems related to the personal and professional development, by understanding human needs and ideal typical thinking/association processes.

Design Thinking is extremely useful for discovering dormant potential, such as entrepreneurial attitudes and creative inspiration. – Self- Branding. Set of instruments and activities designed to foster self-introspection, positive shaping of personal identity, planning and development of own personal communication strategy (particularly on Social Media instruments) and acquisition of related digital competences. – Coaching in Business Management. The methodologies of business coaching are facilitative one-to-one coaching with business managers and owners. This method is focused on business success and includes a mixture of short and long-term objectives.