The CAPSULE Project
CAPSULE is an Erasmus+ project organized in 3 EU countries, Romania, Croatia and Hungary by Impact Hub Bucharest, Career Shift, Impact Hub Zagreb and Impact Hub Budapest with the aim of promoting young people’s initiatives in the area of entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship, with a focus on social inclusion and diversity in fields such as education, training, youth and sport, and also to increase the degree of employability among young people. Participation is free of charge.
During the project’s timeline of 18 months (about 1 and a half years), the participants will go through 5 e-courses about entrepreneurial development skills, creative skills and digital skills, while joining 3 communities of practice and developing their entrepreneurial or community project idea through 3 incubation weekends with the support of coaches and mentors.
CAPSULE focuses on empowering young women across the EU to become change agents, by unlocking their potential, through a holistic capacity building program, supporting them to overcome barriers like limiting beliefs and fear of failure.
10 participants from the 3 countries will take part in an international bootcamp for 5 days, which will take place in Bucharest in 2024.
105 young women from Romania, Hungary, and Croatia have been selected to participate for 18 months in CAPSULE, the European Erasmus+ program that supports the development of female entrepreneurship.
Following the selection process, each country has chosen 35 participants for the local edition of the program, who will benefit from a comprehensive training program, mentoring and coaching sessions, entrepreneurial skills development, and will become part of strong learning communities that will enable them to reach their potential and undergo mental and emotional development as future entrepreneurs.
The proposed projects by the Romanian CAPSULE range from opening creative spaces promoting art and dance, to vegan restaurants and artisanal bakeries, yoga, photography, or interior design studios, to the development of innovative online solutions such as dedicated health platforms integrating artificial intelligence technologies or platforms curating information in the fields of nutrition, mental health, and medicine to reduce online misinformation.
See below the benefits and the program schedule.
Who is this for?
The program targets young women aged 18-28 who are interested in developing a business and are at the beginning of their professional career. Those who are already working on a business idea or have started an entrepreneurial initiative are also encouraged to apply.
The program is looking for:
- young mothers who want to develop a business on their own.
- young women from disadvantaged categories such as migrants, refugees or displaced people located in the program’s partner countries.
- any young woman in the European Union who wants to become an entrepreneur and does not know where to start.
The program, which will be conducted in English over a period of 18 months, will work with 105 participants from the 3 partner countries. In Romania we are looking to work with 35 applicants.
Why join our program
Get access to 5 online courses developed to help you acquire the entrepreneurial, leadership and digital skills needed to prepare you for the first steps in the world of entrepreneurship.
Get to attend 3 physical and 3 online incubation sessions for participants from the 3 countries which will take place on 6 distinct weekends. During these sessions, you will receive support from mentors for shaping your business.
Mentorship & Coaching
Get support from experts who will provide you with individual sessions tailored to your business needs to help you identify your specific challenges and opportunities.
10 participants from the 3 countries will take part in an international bootcamp for 5 days, which will take place in Bucharest in 2024. Together with experts and mentors, you will have the opportunity to connect with international perspectives.
Be part of an international community made up of young entrepreneurs from Croatia, Hungary and Romania. Get to attend events dedicated to entrepreneurs and connect with 3 communities of practice.
You will participate in 5 international mastermind sessions, co-hosted by participants with the aim of learning hosting and facilitation skills by following the facilitators.
Everything you need to know about the typical stages of a startup. Step by step, from idea definition to testing, X10 scaling and exit, going through common challenges and how you can overcome them.
Learn how to integrate digital opportunities into your day-to-day operations and how to make the most of what they have to offer.
Develop new skills and out-of-the-box interventions in your practice. Learn to use your creativity to solve potential business challenges.
Self Leadership for Women in Business
A transformative five-module course designed specifically for ambitious young women, including mothers and those from marginalized backgrounds, who are venturing into entrepreneurship or looking to enhance their current business journey.
Learn about the importance of sustainability and why entrepreneurs should incorporate it into their business model.
The courses will be available to participants in 4 languages – Romanian, English, Croatian and Hungarian.
Calendar of activities in Romania
The activities in the CAPSULE program will take place throughout 18 months and will consist of physical meetings, as well as webinars or international events. Follow the calendar:
- May 30 – August 30, 2023: Enrollment in the program
- September 4 – 15, 2023: Selection of the participants
- September 15, 2023 – February 14, 2025: Program implementation
- September 30 – December 10 2023: Online or offline residential weekends as shown beside*
- February – March 2024: International Bootcamp in Bucharest
- April 2024 – February 2025: Mastermind events
September 29 – October 1, 2023: First incubation weekend (offline)
October 27 – 29, 2023: Second incubation weekend (offline)
November 17 – 19, 2023: Third incubation weekend (offline)
October 20 – 22, 2023: First incubation weekend (online)
November 10 – 12, 2023: Second incubation session (online)
December 8 – 10, 2023: Third incubation session (online)
*These activities have the same theme, and the selected people will participate either in the physical activities in Bucharest, or in the online ones. Impact Hub Bucharest will make the selection for the type of cohort of participants (online and offline). The selection will be based on the country and city where they live, and participation will be mandatory for the cohort they belong to.
1. Can I register for the program and not register for the webinars?
Yes, participation in the program is not conditioned by attending the webinars. Anyone can enroll in the program without having previously registered for the webinars. However, the CAPSULE team recommends attending the webinars because they offer an opportunity for discovery and learning, similar but not entirely the same as the program. Additionally, during the webinars, any person interested in the program can ask questions and receive clarifications regarding the CAPSULE program.
2. What is the level of English language needed?
For a complete learning and understanding experience, we recommend that participants have at least an Intermediate level of English, equivalent to B2 – in writing, reading, and speaking.
3. Can I choose my mentor?
Yes. After the start of the program, the CAPSULE team will provide participants with the profiles of all the coaches and mentors in the program, and each participant will have the opportunity to choose who they will work with. Since the availability of coaches and mentors will be limited, the principle of first come, first served will be applied.
4. What are the mastermind sessions about? Are they only for those 10 chosen ones?
Mastermind sessions offer a combination of brainstorming, education, peer accountability and support to sharpen your business and personal skills. Members challenge each other to set strong goals, and more importantly, to accomplish them.
Withing the CAPSULE program, the mastermind/networking sessions are for all 105 participants. They are super cool gatherings for everyone taking part. These sessions provide a safe space for sharing, receiving honest feedback, practicing leadership, gaining fresh perspectives, understanding different cultures and methods, and fostering accountability by setting goals in front of the group.
They’re led by experts who are designed to equip you with the necessary skills to lead sessions even after the project concludes.
5. How do you choose the people selected for the bootcamp?
Participants for the boot camp will be measured by certificate of attendance, based on their attendance in classes, their level of preparation, and as well as their demonstrated involvement during the residential weekends. These indicators will be analyzed by the trainers, coaches, mentors, and the program team – all of whom represent key stakeholders who will interact with the participants at every step.
6. The program is only half year long if I do not get selected for the bootcamp?
No, for all participants, the program will take place from September 2023 until the end of 2024, with activities spread throughout this period. In the year 2023, there will be residential weekends, individual study, and coaching/mentoring sessions, while in the year 2024, in addition to the boot camp, local practice communities will be formed, and international mastermind/networking sessions will take place.
7. How will I be supported during the individual study period?
For each participant, individual study will be supported by course materials in both English and the local language, as well as the opportunity to work together with an international mentor or coach. Our suggestion is that after each residential weekend, in addition to individual study, each participant allocates at least one hour for mentoring/coaching.
Additionally, all participants will be part of local communities of practice and throughout the entire program they will be supported by dedicated community managers.
The local community of practice will serve as a powerful offline & online space for participants to debate, exchange, investigate, plan, prototype, evaluate business & community projects ideas, life themes, inclusivity & social entrepreneurship etc.
Ilinca Păun & Bravva Angels
Founder Bravva Angels
Oana Groza & wFounded
Carmen Mihalca & antreprenoare.ro
Andreea Coscai & Teodora Toma
Her Time Romania
The European Commission’s support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents, which reflect the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
Impact Hub Bucharest is the dynamic space where professionals and entrepreneurs work to develop business projects and initiatives. Since 2012, Impact Hub Bucharest is the first coworking space in Romania, with a community of over 3000 members in Bucharest. Globally, the organization is present in over 100 locations in over 50 countries. Impact Hub Bucharest’s mission is to support the entrepreneurial ecosystem by offering startup acceleration programs and direct funding, as well as the largest online platform for entrepreneurial education – Startarium.
Impact Hub Budapesta in Hungary provides a home for a diverse community and supports positive social change with a vast young network. Our NGO, the Foundation for Sustainable Enterprises (FVA) – has been actively providing opportunities for the underserved and underprivileged people of Hungary, including projects targeting youth (SIA) and young women in rural areas and women coming from 3rd countries (AWE, MOMENTUM). Since 2017, we have been actively providing opportunities for the underserved and underprivileged people of Hungary, including projects targeting youth and women.
Impact Hub Zagreb is part of the Impact Hub network and one of 100+ Impact Hubs in 60+ countries around the world committed and taking action to build better businesses and solutions for our people and the planet. Impact Hub has been operating in Zagreb since January 2013. In addition to its inspirational collaboration & coworking space, Impact Hub Zagreb contributes with its innovations in educational approach, facilitation and consulting to:
- Micro-entrepreneurs, especially women entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs beginners to secure their position in the market, increase their profitability and use their business to create positive social and environmental change
- Young people, developing their potential to become resilient and active changemakers
- Organizations, to articulate and increase their positive social and environmental impact.
Career Shift provides comprehensive career services, dedicated to empowering individuals and companies in achieving their professional goals. Already reaching over 1 million people through its programs and career events, the company is a top provider in its field in the EU region. Through its founders, who are ICF Accredited coaches, trainers and entrepreneurs, Career Shift offers coaching programs to support individuals through various career transitions and help organizations foster a thriving workforce. Career Shift runs the International Career Coaching Certification Program, Career Booster – a collective group coaching program for career evolution, individual coaching journeys and tailor-made coaching programs for companies. At Career Shift, we understand that navigating the complexities of today’s job market can be challenging, thus we offer tailored coaching programs and individual coaching journeys to meet the specific needs of individuals and organizations.
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