Stavanger Røde Kors – Nettverk etter soning
Forandringsfabrikkens, or The Change Factory’s, philosophy is built on a simple idea: Listening to what (young) people in welfare systems think about what is good help, and what should change for the help to feel good and actually help.
Despite Norway’s welfare system being widely recognised, The Change Factory experience little opportunity for young people’s voice to be heard when placed in institutions such as schools, child care, mental health care and more. Programmes working with children and youth are often adult-led, so that the design and functioning of public policies and institutions do not consider the opinions of those directly affected.
Children and youths’ knowledge is important for welfare systems to work. But many systems does not have good ways to gather this knowledge and use it for development.
The Change Factory aims to get young people to identify system-changing ideas, build consensus around them, and open direct communication between service users and implementing agencies to create real change.
“Nature is not seen, it is experienced”
U-Go the world’s first attendant aid for the visually impaired and anyone who needs to be accompanied.
The Church City Mission is an inclusive, nonprofit organization, which works in towns and cities across Norway, among people who face challenges in life for various reasons. Our vision is that people in the city shall experience respect, justice and care.
Children grow up with a wide variety of eating habits. An increased interest in cooking and growing food means that they are now more aware of what they eat and where their food comes from. This is knowledge that can be very beneficial to their health in later life. We realised that one way of communicating this knowledge was to establish a food culture centre for children and young people. This is why we, together with Therese, who is the project’s founder, concept developer and General Manager, developed the Fra Hage til Mage idea. Therese set out to explore an entirely new world, and the excellent results that her project has achieved, especially in schools, pre-school and refugee reception centres, has really made a big impression.
Norwegian society requires increased efforts from the voluntary sector to assist a variety of different groups. As a contribution towards meeting this challenge, the company ViVil has developed a digital platform available both as a website and an app. The platform makes voluntary work both easier and more socially rewarding for volunteers and employees. ViVil is also working on a system that will enable volunteers to connect with tasks and activities according to their own wishes, interests and availability. The result is that greater numbers of more committed volunteers can find important things to do. There are fewer volunteer drop-outs, and less time wasted on administrative tasks. We at Samfunnssentralen are excited about working together with a technology company that operates with a clear community-focused profile, and which builds its systems from the bottom up. In the technology sector it is important to be the first to come up with a solution, and the entrepreneurs at ViVil are working day and night to get their company up and running. ViVil’s presence at Samfunnssentralen has given the rest of the community a real boost!
Silje Marie has experienced bullying and exclusion and has been a psychiatric patient for ten years. These experiences led her to found her Sommerfugleeffekten service, which she offers to schools and the public sector health services. The service comprises an education programme that includes Silje Marie herself sharing her experiences by relating her personal story of the consequences of bullying and a life on anti-depressives. Silje Marie’s story is a painful one, but is sadly not unique. However, she has a unique talent for finding the inner strength she needs to get her message across. We at Samfunnssentralen are convinced that Silje Marie, together with General Manager Inger Lene, can help to prevent others from finding themselves in the same situation.
Ville Veier is a service offered to young people who have been excluded from ordinary working life or education for a substantial period of time. The service employs creative and health-promoting activities as a way of encouraging coping strategies, personal growth and new learning. Founders and owners Tori and Line have been developing Ville Veier’s concept, approach and holistic focus, and they go the extra mile to identify the inner strengths of those taking part in the programme. This combination of an imaginative spirit and wide-ranging professional expertise distinguishes the Ville Veier approach from similar services. Tori and Line are currently also working to develop a new approach to preventive work with young people.
Clean food is just one of our areas of focus at Samfunnssentralen. Children and young people are another. The Iver & Evne concept caters for both. Entrepreneurs Torill and her brother Øyvind develop exciting tools that make it easier and more fun for children and adults to cook food together. The aim is to help all children to develop an awareness of food and cookery, and to encourage them to adopt healthy eating habits at an early age. Torill and Øyvind make a very good team, and are not afraid to think big. They are currently in the start-up phase of evolving a concept that can provide children and adults with new gastronomic experiences. We are looking forward to seeing how the project develops.
Not all elderly people like bingo and accordion music! Aktivitetsdosetten is a method that ensures that nursing home residents have the opportunity to take part in activities that meet their needs and wishes. Lone, who is the driving force behind the method, was the very first social entrepreneur to join Samfunnssentralen. Her commitment and stamina have been essential in enabling Aktivitetsdosetten to be applied in so many nursing homes all over Norway. Lone and Aktivitetsdosetten have also been key in building the community that we have established at the centre. This is why she is still working at Samfunnssentralen, even though she first walked through our doors as early as 2014.
Drive for Life is a recreational service for children and young people experiencing social inclusion. Users have in common that they don’t quite fit into, or receive adequate benefit from, traditional recreational activities. The combination of action, adrenalin, engines and motor sports is used to arouse their interest. The aim is to develop the sense of togetherness, mastery and involvement that comes with being part of a team. Drive for Life works closely with parents, schools and the child protection agencies. When we got to know about the service, Drive for Life was already established as a highly effective social entrepreneur both in mid- and eastern Norway. Thus our shared aim was to establish Drive for Life here in Western Norway. Business scaling offers both challenges and opportunities, and it was an interesting journey involving a lot of hard work. Today, Drive for Life clubs can be found all over western Norway.
Currently, far too many people are excluded from school and working life. There exists a great deal of research into effective measures for reducing these levels of exclusion, but this know-how is difficult to access, rarely applied, and inadequately implemented in practice, policy-making and working life. Presenter, with its slogan “Making Sense of Science”, makes research results more accessible and available for debate, enabling us to come together to make knowledge-based decisions. In doing so, we equip ourselves to tackle the problem of social exclusion. Presenter was the second social entrepreneur to join us at Samfunnssentralen, and we have experienced an exciting journey together. Work started with the development of a digital portal that makes it easier for anyone to access relevant research material. Founder Randi Wågø Aas impressed us with her knowledge and enthusiasm, and today, Presenter is organised as a network facilitating access to research-based knowledge for those who need it.
Many people who have need of public services have, for different reasons, difficulties in making use of them. The project Tillitsperson (“someone you can trust”) is linked to the Church City Mission in Stavanger, and trains volunteers in how to play the role of trusted friends for these people. The volunteers help social services users to obtain their entitlements and fulfil their obligations. This makes the interaction between the user and the social services system safer and more effective. We at Samfunnssentralen have been working together with Tillitsperson for three years to get the project up and running, and have never been in any doubt that the service was essential to society. Our biggest challenge was to build a financial model that would keep the project viable when the time came for it to leave Samfunnssentralen. By the time our formal collaborative relationship was terminated, Tillitsperson had secured funding from both private and public sources for a further two years.