Sergio Paya Borrull

What is your social enterprise, Sergio?
"My social enterprise is L.I.F.E, which stands for 'learning individually from experience'. I have designed three areas of work to enable people to achieve their true potential. These include adventure, work and vision & sound experience. The new project I'm working on is called The Work Experience; I work with unemployed young people to help to develop their skills."

When did you start L.I.F.E?
"I started in February 2013, but it didn't properly get moving until I joined the SSE East Lloyds Bank Social Entrepreneurs Programme at the EEHub in October 2014. Joining the programme has enabled me to raise awareness of my social enterprise, and to develop my business knowledge to a more professional standard."

Tell us a little bit about yourself...

"I live in Sudbury, but I'm originally from Valencia, Spain. My background knowledge and experience within the field of Adventure Education and my passion for experiential learning - as an alternative pathway to people realising their full potential - enabled me to work within young people development at many levels.

"I then realised the vast opportunities in other areas such as social, physical and psychological development, and the positive effect that adventure and experiential education has on people. This realisation has since enabled me to create several projects, among these is The Work Experience programme."

How is your project progressing? What are your key achievements/milestones to date? 
"I work with disadvantaged young learners (15-25 yrs) including offenders, ex-offenders, early-school leavers and NEETs. The Work Experience programme helps young people to address challenges, by looking at their individual needs and offering them tailored support to increase their confidence. The first cohort has already finished and was successful, running from January 2015 - April 2015.

"The results from the first programme, which was run in Haverhill, Suffolk, were very pleasing. Of the 17 young people who took part, six of them have found employment, four are in apprenticeships and a further six will soon be ready to take part in a 'trainingship' with West Suffolk College and the College of West Anglia. We are also in talks with another local college who'd like to support the young people I work with. The final student is carrying on with work experience for another 12 weeks, which is taking place at a local charity."

"This means that we have had an 100% success rate with this first programme, which I couldn't be happier with!"

What is the best thing about SSE East?
"I love the positive attitude of all the people there; staff and students. There's a great network which I have been exposed to, and there are so many business resources available to me, which I find very useful."

What's your Golden Nugget of advice for other aspiring entrepreneurs?
"Always plan ahead! Get organised, mentally 'walk through' your plan and review your progress often to stay on top of things."


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