On 2 and 3 March 2019, Centre for Civic Education (CCE) organized training for ten persons with disabilities registered as unemployed, on entrepreneurship and start-up concept, with skills for development and management of business plans, within the project ‘Skills Development for Better Employability of Persons with Disabilities’.
During two-day intensive work, participants had the opportunity, through presentations, conversation and practical work, to gain knowledge and guidelines for design and development of their own business, as well as for drafting successful business plan and its implementation. Thus, they were working on concepts of entrepreneurship and development of business plan, along with exercises wherein they have designed ideas for starting their own business, followed by market assessment for these ideas and existing competition, discussion about available funding, risks, planned revenues and expenditure. Also, focus was on the concept of start-up with practical work on business model, discussions about technological start-up, start-up community in Montenegro, investments, but also on the analysis of successful example of start-up business and elaboration of individual ideas.
Milo Radulovic, lecturer at the training and Executive Director of MARLEQ start-up, a platform for career counselling, assessed that ‘there are no barriers when it comes to starting one’s own business. We just need to find the driving forces in ourselves, to do what we love, to surround ourselves with people who have similar aspirations and, of course, to have mentorship support’. He emphasized that it is necessary to discover one’s own talent and to constantly work on oneself in order to achieve desired results. ‘It would be sufficient that only one person succeeds in creating a self-sustaining job and thus be an example to everyone, to positively influence and contribute to his/her community, motivating others to such endeavours’, concluded Radulovic.
Andrea Pavicevic, project participant from Podgorica and marketing and trade technician, said that ‘learning about entrepreneurship and business plans was very useful, especially in part of working on our own ideas. I think that all participants have obtained necessary information that they can use at some point in any work position. For me, this was very encouraging, and it gives me hope that even in small community you can start a business and turn your idea into a service for specific target groups’.
Dragan Pejovic, project participant from Niksic and professor of philosophy and logic, states that ‘when it comes to launch your own business, you always think about challenges, impossibilities and difficulties that discourage people to start anything, and that compels a person to give up on such an idea. This training has shown me that nothing is impossible after all, if we have good idea, interest and will, and herein I include also the importance of non-formal education and trainings similar to this one’.
Training participants demonstrated high level of interest for learning about entrepreneurship, but also hope that the acquired knowledge and skills in this field will be helpful to them, as persons with disabilities who have more difficulties to find a job, in expanding opportunities for employability and self-employment.
Project ‘Skills Development for Better Employability of Persons with Disabilities’ aims to contribute to improvement of social and economic inclusion of persons with disability within Montenegrin society. More specifically, the project aims to improve employability of persons with disabilities through informal training directed at developing key competencies, working practices and promotion of benefits and good practices of employment of these persons within the group itself, but also towards potential employers and general public. The project is implemented by the CCE, in cooperation with company New Page LLC, and with the support of the Employment Agency of Montenegro.
Zeljka Cetkovic, CCE Programme Associate