WOMEN AT THE FRONTIER
Financed by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Union of Commerce Chambers and Calabria, the project brings together and creates a stable and effective network for the circulation and exchange of experience, know-how and project ideas among Italian emigrated women Calabrian women, engaged in business, art and science.
Women paid a heavy price in emotional terms due to emigration, but this created opportunities for participation in the development of the countries to which they emigrated, as well as contributing expertise and various personal talents to their specific foreign societies. Numerous Italian women around the world play and have highly responsible roles in private and public organisations. The Project “Women at the frontier” re-unites and creates an effective and stable international communication network for the circulation and exchange of experiences, know-how, expectations and project ideas, with the view of taking on the challenge of looking and sharing experiences gained, in order to help women from Calabria face the battle of becoming recognised as key participants in the region’s destiny, and taking part as protagonists in the professional and business world.
Women entrepreneurs living in Calabria and individual professionals aiming to develop their professional and business performance; young graduates (both men and women) willing to explore opportunities to learn and work abroad, in the fields of Science, Technology, Arts & Crafts; Italian emigrant women who work abroad in various fields of activity who are willing to contribute to their country of origin by channelling information, experiences, know-how and financial capital. The beneficiaries are the women from Calabria with innovative ideas with ambitions of learning new methods of working in order to help change their communities, and that also have a desire to breath international air.
With the creation of this network, many beneficiaries have and continue to propose themselves as participants in this network, ‘Donne alla Frontiera’, in order to make the most of the opportunities offered in terms of experiences, know-how, counsel, and help provided for the raising of funds for specific purposes. 50 pilot projects were selected and assisted in the first year of the project which consisted of internship schemes, work experiences, promotions and marketing of local products in international markets, benchmarking networks, workshops and study visits for teachers and students from foreign universities to discover the cultural and environmental heritage of Calabria. The network ‘Women at the frontier”, in the first year of activity, completed the following activities:
1. Creation of a set of recommendations to policy makers responsible for “internazionalizzazione” (introducing international perspectives), at regional and national level, so as to introduce new models and practices to support businesses and individuals’ professional developments and careers;
2. Develop a web community which will allow the sharing of knowledge, competencies, networks, and provide assistance to the 50 pilot projects selected as demonstrative actions;
3. Prepare a 2004 -2005 programme for the realisation of short to medium period projects which will give continuity from the results already achieved by the piloting project;
4. Develop a sustainability action plan for future autonomous developments of the network.