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Joakim Grina - Macken Lund

Joakim Grina - Macken Lund

 

Describe yourself and your project. How did you get the idea? 

During my years at Lund University Social Innovation Center (LUSIC) I got involved in the founding team for Macken Lund. Used goods are usually thrown away before their time because of small defects and there is a considerable segment of unemployed people due to the lack of formal education. Inspired by Macken Växjö we will found a social enterprise with workshops where previously unemployed persons recondition used goods and and then re-sell them.

 

Who are you? Previous education/jobs/ experiences etc

I have studied for an MSc in Engineering Physics at the Faculty of Engineering in Lund with the specialization Business and Innovation. During that time I have also been the full-time coordinator of Project Sex (www.projekt6.se) for 1,5 year, started the national umbrella organization Students for Sexual Health (www.sfsh.se) and co-founded LUSIC. Lately I have concentrated on my thesis work about Co-creation methods for Social Innovation.

 

What will you do during these three months? How will you spend the time? 

There are mainly two things that I will focus on during the summer:

  •        I will map the stakeholders, contact them and make sure they get involved. In June, before most stakeholders go on their summer holidays, I will host a stakeholder meeting with support from Coompanion (www.coompanion.se).
  •        I will apply for start-up funding from the European Social Fund. That process includes writing a full project plan and makes sure that there are enough stakeholders that can take part with time and co-funding.

 

What do you expect to achieve during Leapfrogs? 

My ambition is to make sure that social and financial resources are mobilized and secured so that the Macken Lund Ab (svb) can be founded during the fall 2015 and developed during 2016-2018.


Joakim Grina - Macken Lund #2

 

Tell us what you have done on your project so far during the Leapfrogs time. 
The most important activities so far was the planning and implementation of the stakeholder meeting we had in June with 21 participants. Related to this I identified the desired participants, planned the meeting and wrote meeting minutes. After the meeting, the focus has been on keeping contact with the participants and contacting more stakeholders that were identified during the meeting. The meeting was attended by representatives from Lund Municipality, Region Skåne, Arbetsförmedlingen, Finsam, etc. and they were very positive about the plans and intested in becoming parteners.

 

Has everything gone according to the plan? Has anything unexpected occurred? Has something been easier/harder than expected?

We expected about 10 participants at the stakeholder meeting, but instead 21 showed up. Coompanion has decided to take the role as project owners for a start-up project from the European Social Fund (ESF). That will make it possible to run a three years project with 6 million SEK in funding if the ESF application would be successful. Lund Municipality have allocated recourses for Social Ventures in there budget so we have also sent in an application for 200 000 SEK.

 

What will you focus on during the remaining time? Will you follow your original plan or has anything changed along the way?

Since Coompanion has great expertise when it comes to writing applications I will focus more on involving the stakeholders, an important part in making sure that the ESF application becomes successful and to attract co-funding for the project. I have started to plan a study visit to Macken Växjö (www.macken.coop) in the end of August so that politicians etc. will be able to better understand how great Macken could be for Lund. 


Joakim Grina - Macken Lund #3
 

How did you experience the three months?

It feels like time has gone very quickly. June and August has been the most eventful while July was pretty quiet because so many stakeholders had vacation. The network meeting in June is the most rewarding so far because it came so many positive participants. Several meetings have been interesting and even conversations I've had with people I have meet at my spare time has lead to interesting discussions about Macken, there are so many people who are interested and positive to the concept and want to know more.

 

What has been hardest/most enjoyable?

The hardest part was to maintain the motivation and momentum during July when so many team members and people among stakeholders were on vacation. The most enjoyable part has been to meet with various stakeholders and see various opportunities for collaboration. Now I feel excited about the upcoming study visit to Macken Växjö, the writing of the application to the European Social Fund and to meet stakeholders that comes back from their vacation.

 

Did it go as expected? Will you continue working on your project in the future?

So far everything has gone as planned. There is still no funding for the fall, but the hope is that we get funding for next year. That means it is a bit uncertain how my role will look like during the fall but I will definitely be involved as much as possible and play a central role if we get the funding for next year.

 

What would you say is the most important lesson learnt while working on your project?

Regarding the efforts to find stakeholders who are interested in the project, I think it has been clear that it is not worth spending energy trying to convince sceptics. Instead, it is better to find others who are positive. A major breakthrough was when Coompanion chose to become project owner for a possible future projects from the European Social Fund. Coompanion have experience in similar activities and good reputation among many of our stakeholders and therefore made more stakeholders interested.

 

Do you have any tips to other ”new” entrepreneurs?

Work with something you really believe in and connect with other people that have similar interests and aspirations. From my experience you can find those people in the most unexpected situations and places. Don´t push the information about your idea/start-up on people. If it is a good concept and they are interested they will most likely ask questions about it. Instead try to get to know them and share information about your concept when you can connect it with their interests or when they ask you questions.

 

Leapfrogs Working Group
LU Innovation, Sölvegatan 16
Box 117, 221 00 Lund

info [at] leapfrogs [dot] se