TUI Futureshapers Portugal

TUI Futureshapers Portugal provides social entrepreneurs with training opportunities, mentors and experts to help them grow sustainable tourism businesses and ideas with impact. It also links them with a network of social and environmental entrepreneurs that will help them reach their business potential. As such, the project aims to promote initiatives which create positive impact in Portugal’s tourism industry. 

Since the 2008 global economic crisis, Portugal has been particularly hard hit by cycles of recession and a steady brain drain, with young people often opting to move abroad in search of higher salaries and better job prospects. In a country where tourism and travel-related revenues account for around 10% of the country's GDP, the industry can lead the way in creating sustainable solutions and positive impact both socially and environmentally. It can also promote entrepreneurial leadership and job opportunities for young people.

TUI Futureshapers Portugal promotes social innovation in tourism by providing technical assistance to eight projects and supporting them to become fully operational enterprises. This in turn contributes to a more dynamic entrepreneurial ecosystem and promotes positive impact in responsible tourism in Portugal.

Up to 24 participants with ideas in social innovation in tourism will receive a 10-month technical programme (including six months of training) in association with IRIS (Regional Incubator for Social Innovation). This will cover on-site masterclasses in Porto and Lisbon on topics such as value proposal, financial planning, impactful business modelling, managing partnerships, measuring impact and digital marketing. Two trips will showcase established social impact projects around the country to the participants, who will also receive five sessions with a dedicated mentor as well as online training content provided by TUI Group.

Additionally, during a final event in Lisbon, participants will be able to pitch their enterprises to a panel of judges, including experts from TUI Group who will provide tailored feedback on each pitch. Eight socially innovative business ideas will then progress to become independent, self-sustaining businesses. 

PROJECT PARTNER

IRIS (Regional Incubator for Social Innovation) was created as a partnership for impact in 2017, in the Tâmega e Sousa region.

It is an incubator that supports the creation and development of social innovation projects, which are new ideas to solve serious social and environmental problems.

IRIS is promoted by the European Investment Bank Institute and PortusPark, with co-financing from Portugal Inovação Social. In 2020, to continue the work developed, the non-profit association IRISOCIAL Incubadora de Inovação Social was created.

Currently, IRIS operates along two axes: incubation and education. In incubation, it supports impact projects and empowers them to have the necessary tools to achieve better results and social and environmental impact.  

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