• Promoting social inclusion and active citizenship

    Between four and ten thousand people live in the streets of Prague, making homelessness an issue that has to be addressed on a social level. That’s why Pragulic cofounders Tereza Jureckova and Ondrej Klugl came up with an idea for a project that allows people living in the streets to become tourist guides, contributing to the reduction of social exclusion and stigmatisation.

    “It all started after SIA kick off in Prague in 2012,” Ondrej says of the idea, which by now has transformed into a social business. “At that time we were three students who decided to connect and run a project.” Today, besides the two managers, the team consists of external psychologists, bookkeepers, and volunteers who translate the city tours. “Although most people overlook the homeless we learned that they have big potential and we hope that we can help them restart their lives with our service and what is even more important also educate the public,” Tereza adds.

    Tereza and Ondrej found out about the SIA competition through their university and having dived deeper into the concept of social entrepreneurship they decided to take part at the kick off at Imapct Hub Prague. “For me it was a great chance to finally start something,” says Tereza who aims to help a marginalised group gain acceptance and respect by giving them a place and purpose in society.

    What doesn’t kill you…

    While the beginning was tough, both cofounders proved they had the will and the ambition to deal with challenges. When Ondrej had a knee surgery during the launch of Pragulic, all he could think of was keeping the business going. “I remember the first thing I did when I woke up after the surgery was that I had to deal with some phone call connected with Pragulic. It was both mentally and physically difficult for me and it influenced me a lot.” Tereza, on the other hand, won’t quit the project before she’s 100% sure that it can be run without her. “Sometimes you lose your energy with people who are not worth it. But whatever I do I never completely forget about work and I am looking for social enterprises, homeless or inspiring people. I think that this is a sign that I am really passionate about what I do.”

    Setting high goals

    With its lovely bridges and numerous historical sites Prague is a must-visit for tourists from all over the world. Pragulic tours, however, offer a different perspective on city life and allows you to experience a place through the eyes of a homeless person. „We have proven to ourselves and also to people around us that we were able to set up a sustainable social business,“ says Ondrej.

    “When you grow you are setting up higher and higher goals. I compare it with what we achieved over time and I can be really proud. For us, every small step counts,” Tereza concludes.

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