The Switchers Support National Partnerships’ Regional Exchange Takes Off in La Marsa, Tunisia, Ready to Elevate to the Regional Level!

Friday 17 November 2023


October 17, 2023, marked the exciting kick-off of the Switchers Support National Partnerships (SSNP) Regional Exchange in La Marsa, Tunisia. This one-day event was a dedicated platform for fostering knowledge exchange, collaboration, and the formulation of concrete strategies, all to ensure the continued success of SSNPs through consolidation at the national level and increased development in regional cooperation to new heights.

Nabil Hamdi from the Ministry of Environment of Tunisia, Mme Sallouha Bouzgarrou, Local Coordinator of the Green Entrepreneurship program at CITET, and Giorgio Mosangini, Team Leader of Green Entrepreneurship & Civil Society at MedWaves, initiated the morning welcome by emphasizing key aspects of the network implementation:

  • Importance of a Unified Voice and Political Advocacy for Green Enterprises: Recognizing the significance of a unified voice and political advocacy to promote the interests of green enterprises.
  • Enhancing Efficiency and Effectiveness through Support Structure Networks: Highlighting how support structure networks can contribute to increased efficiency, resource sharing, impacts and advocacy for enabling policies.
  • Diversity of Organizations and Training of Trainers: Underlining the diversity of participating organizations and the importance of training trainers within the program.
  • Ensuring the Sustainability of National Partnerships and Networks: Stressing the importance of ensuring the sustainability of national partnerships and networks.
  • Identifying Funding Sources and Promoting Regional Collaboration: Discussing the identification of potential funding sources and promoting regional collaboration.
  • Exploring Future Actions, Needs, and Interests for Regional Collaboration: Engaging in the exploration of future actions, needs, and interests to foster regional collaboration.

Before starting, solidarity with the Palestinian population and support for colleagues who were unable to attend was expressed, acknowledging the virtual presence of Olga V. Albatran in Palestine, Ghada Moghny (Senior Programme Coordinator at CEDARE in Egypt), and Krystel Khalil (Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Programs at Berytech).

After that, all the countries presented, and all the representatives shared their current status and the lessons they’ve learned from their respective countries. At midday, all the groups commenced their working sessions and debates, focusing on discussions related to the development strategies for the continuity of SSNP at the national and regional levels. Participants were invited to a critical exploration of analysis, achievements, and goals, setting the stage for a vibrant working session where representatives from Local Partner organizations and MedWaves’ Green Entrepreneurship team engaged in active participation and fruitful discussions.

Also, Artur Nadcrinicinii, an associated expert at MedWaves, presented consultancy findings based on more than 20 qualitative interviews with leading partners, BSOs, entrepreneurs, SSNPs members, and experts from the eight countries. Taking into account all these experiences with national partnerships, Artur addressed the importance of the regional level, highlighting the strengths related to collective problem-solving and resilience building. He also outlined how cross-border knowledge exchange, sharing expertise, and addressing regional challenges while leveraging resources can contribute to the development of regional infrastructure for sustainable and circular supply chains. At that stage of the conference, Artur delivered recommendations and strategies for strengthening regional cooperation, mobilising key actors, and working on the diversification of funding strategies. Finally, he provided an example of the European Business and Innovation Centre Network to illustrate how they put their management, services, and funding into practice.

Finally, all the members explored opportunities and ways to enhance collaboration at national and regional levels, ultimately crafting action plans for the future and agreeing on new steps to expand the network. It has been a great step forward, paving the way for the continuity of robust networks to come together during the event on October 17, 2023, in Tunisia.

Are you willing to know more about the SSNP network?

The SSNP operates in Southern Mediterranean countries through a network of local partners, governmental agencies, civil society organizations, and businesses. The program primarily supports aspiring green entrepreneurs, known as “Switchers,” by offering capacity-building, mentorship, and access to resources. Additionally, it promotes Switchers at the national level and raises awareness about the imperative to enhance comprehensive support for switchers as change-makers addressing environmental and social issues

We define SSNP as a:

“A non-institutionalised voluntary association of public and private actors that cooperate on green business development services to achieve a mutually agreed-upon objective which can potentially benefit all the involved parties making available resources, skills, and knowledge.”

Learn more about the Switchers Support National Partnership here