Joined by the Antwerp Municipality, local and European social enterprises, along with Circuit, HEREWEAR dived into figuring out how to turn the social economy into a cornerstone of reviving the city’s vibe. A vibrant group of 40 participants teamed up with us for the whole day, bringing energy and ideas that truly made it an unforgettable experience. The day kicked off with some thought-provoking and inspiring talks, thanks to HEREWEAR partners, the City and Province of Antwerp, and some cool social enterprises.

Credits: TCBL, Mai Bine & Centexbel

Credits: TCBL, Mai Bine & Centexbel

Credits: TCBL, Mai Bine & Centexbel

Centexbel and TCBL were all about aiming to spin up local, eco-friendly cycles for textile and clothing production. They’re also big on shifting to a fairer economy, with the social economy setting the pace. Antwerp is on a mission to become a fashion hotspot again, so they focused on showcasing how they support local and social businesses and retailers to contribute to a daily life worth living. In addition, Circuit, Makers Unite, Re-Antwerp, Studio Ama and Mai bine shared their experiences of successes and challenges in the development of varied social businesses.

Credits: TCBL, Mai Bine & Centexbel

Credits: TCBL, Mai Bine & Centexbel

In the afternoon, a workshop got down to brass tacks, pinpointing 10 big hurdles for social enterprises in this scene. Out of these, four hot topics got the spotlight: teaming up with traditional brands, figuring out real value and the actual price, dreaming up new business models, and thinking about how to scale down sustainably. Teams dove deep into these issues, brainstorming solutions with some smart approaches like the Appreciative Inquiry and the World Café methods.

But it wasn’t all work and no play – the day was buzzing with new connections, a whole lot of passion, and heaps of confidence boosting!

Credits: TCBL, Mai Bine & Centexbel

And guess what? They’re rounding it all off with a manifesto. So, stay tuned!

Contact person & email address:

  • Elvys Sandu (email)
  • Frédérique Thureau (email)