In Romania, we’ve been talking about change for almost 30 years. There is no common meaning of ‘change’, but everyone seems to want it.
The growing discontent with social injustice and economic hardship generated two responses in society, one of denial and the other of trying to build solutions against all odds.
Social enterprise for us is the building of solutions against the odds. We identified a series of challenges in the Delta that, we think, could be answered by starting up responsible businesses by and for the community.
In turn, the revenues from these social enterprises can finally create the change everybody wants. In time a more independent community, with greater financial means, can afford to protect and invest in the social care of its members and the conservation of the area they live in.
In the Delta, there has always been a conflict between social problems and the need for nature conservation. Here, it’s fair enough to say that conservation is still a luxury and that poverty alleviation is still an uphill battle.
Social ventures led by the Delta’s local communities can be a way of putting people’s needs and the care for nature on an equal footing.
The disconnection between people’s and nature’s well-being only exists because the local capacity for protecting nature has never really been used. Neither has the revenue that the local community can generate been used for conservation.
Social ventures in the Delta would also be a democratic exercise of having a voice that can advocate for the rights of responsible natural resource use and developing a fair relationship with the local administration.
We strongly believe that the Delta is a place with great human capacity and potential for innovation. And we’ll help unlock this potential.
It’s a platform to inform the travellers about this wonderful area with meaningful information about its history, ethnical heritage, biodiversity and travel tips.
Small business development, i.e. hospitality training
Embedding natural capital in businesses, i.e. how to use wild resources and the landscape for generating revenues
Local products and services development, i.e. beekeeping, reviving traditional roof thatching, home-made fish preserves
Nature guiding, i.e. birdwatching
Facilitating the relationship with the local administration, i.e. fishing legislation briefings, creating Private – public partnerships for the area
Help measuring businesses’ investment impact in the community
We are building this initiative in a transparent way and we are open to show and tell, to share our ideas that can be replicated, to help changing the unsustainable business practices in the area and create a movement for a viable use of Delta’s resources.
This enterprise will reinvest its net profits in the capacity building programme (see above). The profits are partly generated by a Conservation levy, a 10% charge for all the services provided to the guests coming to the Delta.
It will create a platform for partnerships with other similar local enterprises.
It will start up a small-scale apprenticeship programme for the members of the local communities.
Travel with us in the Delta and you can support our endeavour.