Rural HUB


Rural HUB is a co-working space and educational complex in which people with an urban background join forces with traditional farmers. The collaboration is based on preserving, enhancing and retrofitting the existing village, its values and lifestyle, while introducing selected modernization. The Rural HUB is a co-working space where innovative, socially responsible individuals and organization can work, meet, learn and connect. Rural HUB puts efforts in development of its local community by providing services of accommodation, food and cultural – sightseeing content in collaboration with the locals from Vrmdža, taking care of the environment, tradition and households. The Rural HUB encourages and supports the development of the local community by using its products and services to preserve the nature, tradition and households. The target group for the activities are individuals of all ages living in rural areas and wishing to start socially responsible and innovative individual or family businesses, thereby indirectly leading to increased prosperity of the community and halting migrations from villages. In particular, activities are addressed to young people and women. The activities are focused on comprehensive educational programs, social business design training and application, development of unique touristic offer and specific domestic products and services, development of sustainable farms, green jobs preparation, and service learning opportunities.

Networking, Training / Teaching, Production of goods, Services delivery, Assistance & Advice, Social media, Public participation, Fundraising, Workshops
Municipality Sokobanja, Erste Bank a.d. Novi Sad, GIZ YEP, villagers and new comers.

Rural Hub has risen awareness in community that it is possible to combine urban and rural knowledge on sustainable way. Overall, the impact of the project is wide spread through many different fields of community, economic, environmental, cultural, education and personal development: - Development of HUB model which is suitable for replication in rural areas - Promotion of sustainable living through the ecovillage model across the country and region - Open dialogue on sustainable living development policies and measures among relevant stakeholders - Sustainable development education workshops and trainings for local community - Development of human resources in ecovillage design and social business, especially from village - Raising awareness of diverse aspects of sustainable living - Supporting local community to apply different examples of eco-housing and appropriate eco-technology solutions - Establishment of cooperation with the Vrmdza community - Supporting building of eco-tourism facilities and accommodation capacities

Development of Rural HUB as a new way of practice of co-working in rural areas was important steps toward rural sustainable development and building the rural network for sustainable communities. Rural HUB is a co-working place in village Vrmdža, developed as a concept where the entire village is the HUB. Our development strategy was based on our rural model of a sustainable eco-village Vrmdza and is achieved through collaboration between people from an urban background and traditional farmers from this village. We also worked on a network of rural initiatives and individuals who want to develop and apply this rurban concept of Rural HUB in their surroundings. Rural HUB is used for networking, sharing knowledge and experience, capacity building, mentorship and organizing different kind of activities and events important for the promotion of this idea and the concept of sustainable communities. We promote social economy based on green economy, especially by joining urban skills and knowledge with local rural heritage. We want to use, through this project, power of social economy for community development in rural, highlighting importance of women for long-term and sustainable solutions and seeing youth as a change makers and starters of new sustainable practice in community. We are promoting a so called RURBAN concept through the establishment of a new format for an open-type Rural HUB event that serves as a platform for the exchange of ideas, information and experiences between different initiatives and individuals who want to integrate rural and urban knowledge and experience and apply it to a better quality personal and community life in their environment. We have created a rural network for sustainable communities through networking of individuals and rural initiatives interested in defining and multiplying the Rural HUB model in their community. More than 3 different rural initiatives have shown interest in learning and developing their model based on this model. We have also created a framework for innovative rural practices where young people become familiar with rural surroundings and use their knowledge of modern technology to create new attractive content about the village in order to promote work and life in it. We have been developed applications for the interactive map "Through Vrmdza and Centuries" as a form of innovative promotion of the offer of the Vrmdza village in the context of impact tourism, as a form of self-employment and financial independence of women and young people from this village. At the European Enterprise Promotion Award (EEPA), Rural HUB was recognized as a national winner for 2018. in the Green Markets and Energy Efficiency category.

* Information at the level of NUTS 3 or local regions.