Arbeit Plus, Co-organiser of the European conference on « Social Enterprises and Digital Inclusion : participation in the Social and Digital world »

©arbeit plus/Anna Rauchenberger

arbeit plus, from Austria, the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2018 and ENSIE organised a European conference on “Social Enterprises and Digital Inclusion: Participation in the Social and Digital World”. The conference was a great opportunity to learn more about the role of work integration social enterprise in the social and digital world, but also to present good practices of social enterprises working on digital inclusion and having digital strategies in accordance with the Commission’s four pillars of Digital Inclusion (Accessible ICT, assistive technologies, skills and digital skills, social inclusion). The conference has seen a succession of several speakers who talked about different issues such as the impact of digitisation on the labour market and the inclusion of people with disabilities and how can inclusion in the digital work succeed. We would like to congratulate arbeit plus for their work and for the organisation of this successful conference!

GSEF 2018 : ENSIE's members interventions

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For its 4th edition, the Global Social Economy Forum (GSEF) 2018 was held on the 1st and the 2nd of October in Bilbao. The GSEF aims at reuniting local governments and actors of the Social Economy sector. It represents a great opportunity for public and private stakeholders to get together and discuss points of views and experiences on how to build a better world, centred on human well-being. Xavier Roberti, on behalf of Groupe Terre, member of one of our Belgian members (RES) gave a presentation at the GSEF 2018 during the session on "Entrepreuneurship and Social Innovation", and talked about the relationship between participative social enterprises and unions. While, Aicha Belassir, Director of Faedei, one of ENSIE's Spanish members, gave a presentation about FAEDEI's 2017 Annual Report and ENSIE's "Impact-WISEs" study.

The 16th edition of the State Day of WISEs and the 10th anniversary of Faedei

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Faedei (Federación de Asociaciones Empresariales de Empresas de Inserción) hosted two-in-one event in Madrid. The first one was the 16th edition of the State Day of WISEs. An ideal meeting to learn more about WISEs, their innovative initiatives of social intervention, their training device and acquisition of labour and social skills in the workplace, which is one of the most efficient instruments against poverty and social exclusion.

The second event was the 10th anniversary of Faedei. This meeting was also the opportunity to review the past, the present and the future of Faedei. Learn more.

Fundația Alături de Voi România (ADV) – Open call for more charities to enrol

For the past two years, Fundația Alături de Voi România, from Romania, has developed, a worldwide tour-operator providing over 240.000 travel and touristic services. As a social business, ADV also helps Work Integration Social Enterprises by donating 4% of all sales automatically (without charging the traveller) to the favourite charity picked by each traveller. Moreover, travellers are informed of all charities and social enterprises nearby to further support them.

ADV recently launched an open call for more charities to enrol. Learn more here.

ENSIE welcomes two new members in its network

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ENSIE’s team is pleased to announce two new memberships : Klimax Plus from Greece and Eco-Razeni from Moldova.

  • Eco-Razeni Association is a national non-governmental organisation founded in 1998, responsible for the secretariat of the platform from 2015, and is the Founder of the social integration enterprise Floare de Cires Catering Ltd. Floare de cires provides training and employment for people with disabilities from rural areas. At Eco-Razeni and Floare de cires are 25 people full employed.
  • Klimax Plus is a social enterprise that has the social aim to improve the quality of life and socio-economic rehabilitation of socially excluded persons (homeless, Roma, ex-prisoners, people with mental disorders) through tailored work integration. Klimax Plus is engaged in economic activity and generates income, mainly, from market sources by recycling and reuse and catering services.

Arbeit Plus & Groupe Terre at the European day of social economy enterprises

The European day of social economy enterprises was held at the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), in Brussels. An important event presenting strategies and exchange of experiences for a more social future Europe and to boost social innovation and support to social enterprises.

Two ENSIE members were present: Arbeit Plus and Groupe Terre (a WISE member of Réseau d'Entreprises Sociales [RES])) to discuss gender equality in social economy entreprises’ structures of governance and on how to enhance the impact of social economy & enable its scaling up.

In the framework of the European Day of Social Economy Enterprises 2018, François Malaise, Deputy Director-General for Terre Group (represented within ENSIE by RES) and Manuela Volmann from Arbeit Plus participated in a workshop lead by Social Economy Europe. This workshop, which took place on 4th of June in Brussels, covered how to enhance the impact of Social Economy and enable its scaling up. François Malaise highlighted, in particular, the inception of the group, the acquisition and integration of others enterprises as well as employment development.

ENSIE Danish member at Yale representing the All People Foundation


Connie Hasemann, former Founder and CEO for All Ears TM (and Founder and Patron for The All People Foundation) was in April 2018 invited to speak at the Unite for Sight conference at Yale in USA about Social Firms - with the title “How to turn a Disability into a Competitive Edge”. Unite for Sight conference is the world’s leading global health and social entrepreneurship conference. This Annual and Global Health & Innovation Conference has attendants from USA and 55 countries.

The goal for The All People Foundation is to contribute to employment opportunities for persons with reduced work abilities and spreading the knowledge about running a business with a high social impact and with the aim of establishing more enterprises, that are social.

La fédération des entreprises d’insertion worked on several possible improvements on responsible public procurement in the CESE report

On the 27th of March the federation was invited to the presentation of the CESE report on the responsible public procurement, for which the federation was consulted. This report establishes the lack of the use of public procurement. During its hearing, the federation puts forward several possible improvements which were included in the recommendations of the CESE report:

  • Take into account Corporate Social Responsability (CSR) in the award of contracts;
  • Foster temporary joint-ventures;
  • Go further than the simple execution of an integration volume of hours in the implementation of social clauses, in particular in order to better acknowledge the quality of work done by the work integration social enterprises;
  • Enhance the entering of social clauses in markets on more qualifying sectors, such as informatics computer services or green economy 

This report will be used as basis for proposals that delegation at the forecasting and at the evaluation of public policies will articulate for the annual report on the France state of art during 2018.

Union Luxembourgeoise de l’Économie Sociale et Solidaire : Social and solidarity economy progress in Luxembourg

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We would like to congratulate ENSIE's Luxembourgian member, ULESS, for its parts of investment in the social economy development in Luxembourg! On 22nd of March 2018 ULESS general assembly took place. This general assembly confirmed social and solidarity economy dynamism in Luxembourg. ULESS supports with enthusiasm the entry into force of Law of 12 December 2016. As a reminder, this law created societal impact businesses and allowed legislative recognition of social and solidarity economy in Luxembourg. In the framework of this new legislation, actions have multiplied in order to inform and increase awareness on social economy enterprises. Partnerships have been also developed.

EVT Network – Enterprise Vocation Transition : A two-days workshop to gain a better understanding of the Reform of the Third Sector


On the 15th and 16th of March, Consortium EVT and Scuola Centrale Formazione organised a two-days workshops, titled “The Reform of the Third Sector: the changes for the VET sectors and social enterprises”. The objective was to support the associated members in discovering innovation and changes brought by the national reform, with the help of some experts of the sector. Discover the event's documentations here.

Work integration structures are now recognised as stakeholders of professional training of disadvantage people in France

After lenghty negotations, la Fédération des entreprises d’insertion - France, in consultation with work integration networks, succeds to integrate connection between “alternance” (sandwich system) and work integration in the Interbranch/Interprofessional national agreement (ANI) on the personal training signed by social partners.

Impact Conference 2018 : ACT Group important and big event

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On 14 & 15th February Impact 2018 was organized in Zagreb. This conference purpose was to make a difference through businesses, nonprofits and social enterprises. Impact conference was the opportunity that pioneers of social impact gathered under one roof to showcase the best practices from around the world. By these exchanges, the main mission is to accelerate social change by boosting the connections, funding and visibility of change-makers.

Impact 2018 is the first conference of its kind in South East Europe. During these two days, participants experience TED-style talks, engaging panel discussions, pitch sessions and much more all with one underlying theme: how to make the world a better place. This conference is dedicated to connecting everyone creating a positive impact.



The 3rd edition of the National Conference on Social Entrepreneurship took place this on November 24th 2017 in Tekwill, Chisinau, Moldova. It is the most important event of the year in Republic of Moldova for all actors of social economy. The overall objective of the conference is to strengthen the role of social enterprises as promoters of positive change towards an inclusive society. The conference gives participants the chance to extend their network, to interact with various local and international experts from Belgium, Hungary, Croatia, Austria, Romania, who will motivate by inspiring and entertaining speeches other social initiatives. The event also allows the opportunity to know closely successful stories via an exhibition of Moldavian social enterprises. 

The event is part of the "Social Entrepreneurship" program of the Eco-Razeni Association, implemented with the financial support of IM Swedish Development Partner, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and Attaché for Labour, Social Affairs and Consumer Protection, Austrian Embassy Chisinau. »

In his speech on « Democracy and social enterprise » Xavier Roberti - representing ENSIE member Groupe Terre from Belgium - explained the guidance of participative management based on the experience of their social enterprise.

Moldova has to face a crucial challenge, as social enterprises – which are living a thriving phase – still struggle with social and cultural changes and corruption in public authorities which affect the economic system. The good news is that a bill was passed a few weeks, introducing tax incentives and inducements from the local public administration authorities in order to promote the development of social entrepreneurship.

ENSIE congratulates "Eco-Razeni" and its president Sergiu Gurau for their remarkable work and hopes to welcome them as members of our network soon.

ULESS works in order to support social and solidarity economy organizations

In November the Luxembourg Justice Minister gave clear indications as regards the evolution of the law on non-profit associations and foundations, which will evolve in the direction of greater legal certainty, administrative simplification, greater transparency and greater consistency. 

ULESS is working in order to support social and solidarity economy organizations wishing to concretely envisage a transition from the non-profit organization and / or foundation to the social impact society scheme. Find more information here

ULESS invites your to its participative debate 'Non profit association and societies with social impact

Together with Chamber of commerce and with the support of COPAS & EGCA, our member ULESS is organising a participative debate on 'Non profit association and societies with social impact'


@ Centre de conférences de la Chambre de Commerce - 7, rue Alcide de Gasperi, Luxembourg-Kirchberg

More information

La Fédération des Entreprises d'Insertion : Publication of 2017 key figures


"La Federation des Entreprises d’Insertion", from France, published figures result from the economic and social data that the federation collects each year from its member companies cumulative turnover, breakdown by sector of activity, number of employees. This publication can be consulted online or downloaded here

Pioneering role of the University of Luxembourg in taking social criteria into account in public contracts

ULESS salutes the pioneering role of the University of Luxembourg in taking social criteria into account when awarding public contracts. Since 2014, ULESS has strongly advocated that the awarding of public procurement is no longer decided solely on the basis of the lowest price, but also taking into account the social and environmental characteristics of the tenders. ULESS guide on social consideration in public procurement.

Read the guide published by ULESS on the use of public procurement (french only)

ENSIE supports Romanian civil society organisations!

On August 4th 2017, the Government adopted an ordinance (60/2017) which includes, together with several very welcomed social protection measures for persons with disabilities, a set of decisions with extremely negative consequences on their employment status. These decisions refer to immediate changes in the implementation of the quota system[1]. More concretely, from September 1st 2017 the companies or institutions with over 50 employees, who do not hire at least 4% of persons with disabilities (known as the “quota system”), lose their option to buy products from sheltered units (most of them being social economy enterprises). Instead, they only have to pay a financial penalty to the State budget, compensating this lack of compliance with the quota regulation.

By consequence this ordinance will put in danger the existence of approximately 740 Romanian sheltered units, who employ 4000 workers, among which 2000 are persons with disabilities having reduced employability chances on the free market.

See the FONSS request for support letter

See ENSIE press release


[1] The quota system was introduced in 2006, by the Law 448 on the protection and promotion of the rights of persons with disabilities  

arbeit plus invites you to its conference 'Back to work, now!'

Our Austrian member arbeit plus is organising the conference 'Back to work, now!' - a European conference on creating jobs for long-term unemployed over-50s

Join us on 21/09/2017 in Vienna, Austria

ENSIE and its members Chantier Ecole, La fédération des entreprises d'insertion and RES will be pleased to welcoming you with arbeit plus.

See the programme