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ARTE Social Cooperative

Bielawa, Poland

Poland and Romania Accelerator
in partnership with NESsT  

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Arte provides food and shelter as well as psychological and professional support for vulnerable communities

The mountainous Lower Silesia region in Poland, where social cooperative Arte is present, lacks quality support services for vulnerable communities. To make things worse, people in need are faced with growing food prices and relatively high inflation rates, so affordable first-need products are difficult to access.

Arte offers a solution by providing food and shelter as well as comprehensive psychological, social, and professional support for these communities. The social enterprise works with people who are homeless, have been incarcerated, or struggle with problematic drug use.

Through long-term therapy, Arte supports each person to rebuild their interpersonal connections, discover or redevelop their professional and personal interests, and ultimately pursue their desired careers.

The social enterprise hires interns to work in its main lines of business: construction, cleaning, and gardening. To accommodate the career needs of each individual, Arte also organises workshops on job searching and provides tailored vocational training. Upon completing the internship, participants have the opportunity to work in the cooperative or search for a job elsewhere. To date, it has hired 85 of its own program graduates.

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The Poland and Romania accelerator will enable Arte to launch its new business: multiple shops based around the region of the Lower Silesia, that offer basic needs products at affordable prices. The new social franchise will be dedicated to providing quality job opportunities for excluded women. Arte aims to hire women to manage each shop and reorganise its shelter to better accommodate women residents.

With the investment capital that is part of the programme, Arte will be able to purchase inventory and equipment and cover operational costs for its first social shop. The social enterprise will also get advice on its expansion strategies for its new social franchise and assistance to develop and implement impact tracking with an emphasis on sustainable waste management and gender equity.

We are glad you are giving us the opportunity to expand our social impact activities and improve the lives of the people we work for. We want to use your great business knowledge to scale up our marketing, sales and communication, and will be happy to establish new business contacts in the region. 

Ula Jurga, administrative and office worker, Arte