Voidstarter will be a place where young people can learn and apply entrepreneurial skills and creative problem solving methods.

We will involve young people in the refurbishment of empty properties. These renovated voids will be used as ‘meanwhile use’ pop-up offices and business units to provide entrepreneurship mentoring and training to young people until the point when the renovated units can once again be used for housing.

We will work with groups of young people to help them identify and develop initial social enterprise concepts that respond to challenges in their local community. Young people will also be supported through four months of mentored training to develop and test business or social enterprise concepts.

To tackle youth unemployment we want to help young people to become job creators instead of job seekers

By accessing and partially renovating these empty homes we will be giving young people a practical experience of being involved in the regeneration of their communities. When the project finishes these partially renovated homes will be handed back to the local authority to be converted into a home.

The outputs of the project include:
Training and mentoring sessions for young people
Co-design events for stakeholders and community
A new network of people addressing empty properties
Evaluation reports and stories of success & failure

We have identified and visually audited a number of possible locations across Dublin where we could run pilot projects.

The first phase of Voidstarter is to run a pilot project in one area of Dublin. Running a small pilot project will enable us to refine the idea, learn through doing and evaluate the project. Based on what we have learned we will develop a toolkit that can be shared with other communities who want to use vacant properties in their communities for a positive purpose.

We will look at developing Voidstarter projects in other areas of Dublin with the longterm vision of developing Voidstarter projects in other parts of Ireland. We also intend to make the process open source so that other communities across Europe can learn and apply similar approaches in their city.