New opportunity: the Green4C Business Innovation Challenge

Are you interested in the ways nature can promote health and social inclusion? Do you have an innovative idea promoting the benefit of nature? Would you like to learn how to start your own project?

Co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union, Green4C is a three-years Knowledge Alliance promoting nature-based solutions for health, wellbeing, and social inclusion. Bringing together universities, businesses, and organisations, Green4C wants to provide interdisciplinary skills and encourage innovation and entrepreneurship in Green Care.

The term Green Care refers to a “range of activities that promotes physical and mental health and well-being through contact with nature”. In the last few decades, a growing body of research is demonstrating the benefits of the contact with nature on health and wellbeing. Green Care can improve mental and physical health, representing an efficient tool for public health issues. In addition, activities such as social farming or community gardening can promote social inclusion and address other social issues.

Recognising the central role of nature for the development of a healthier and more sustainable future, Green4C seeks to foster Green Care as an efficient answer to environmental, health, and social concerns.

To stimulate the creation of innovative Green Care initiatives, the project has produced high quality training opportunities and materials tailored to the Green Care sector. For example, in October it started an e-learning course mixing academic knowledge and business skills, designed in collaboration with the University of Padova and Elevate Health.

Today, the Green4C team has produced an interesting new opportunity, the Business Innovation Challenge (BIC). The BIC is a competition for anyone with innovative ideas involving nature, health, and wellbeing. Participants will compete by presenting their business or projects ideas to promote the health and social benefits of nature. Ideas can involve one or more Green4C thematic sectors, i.e., Forest-based care, Urban green care, Social agriculture, and Green care tourism.

Winners of the BIC will gain access to the Green4C Summer School. The Summer School is a high specialisation course taking place in Italy, at the Agripolis campus of the University of Padova. Top European experts in Green Care will be sharing knowledge and best practices on entrepreneurship, forestry, nature-based solutions, health, and much more. The aim of this course is to give students all the necessary tools to realise innovative Green Care initiatives. Only 25 participants will be selected for the Summer School.

The deadline to participate in the BIC is on the 1st of May 2022, at 23.59 CEST. To apply, participants must fill out the application form, which includes the presentation of their business or project idea in Green Care. Learn all the details about the BIC here.

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