Bulgaria has diverse landscapes and regions. In some regions, however, the livelihoods of the population are not sufficient. We researched the commune of Sadovo and in particular the village Seltsi. Hogeschool Van Hall Larenstein was approached to find innovative options for the villages of Sadovo to improve the local livelihoods due to the town hall's lack of knowledge about the current situation regarding present initiatives, innovations, and potential opportunities for development. It aspires to turn Sadovo into a strong rural commune with satisfying livelihoods of its inhabitants.

Together with students and interpreters from the University of Plovdiv, we conducted our research in Seltsi by carrying out a Transect walk, conducting interviews with the locals and creating a village map. We used multiple tools to assess the local livelihoods, like the Sustainable Livelihood Framework and a SWOT analysis. We worked on finding and creating our innovation to support the local community.

Our innovation

When researching Seltsi we acknowledged that there was a severe lack of medical care. Therefore, we came up with an innovation. We developed a medical vending machine outside the grocery store in the centre of the village. The vending machine will be filled by a pharmacist from Popovitsa and will sell over-the-counter medicines. A pharmacist comes once a month for a few hours to distribute prescribed medications. Through this, a medical pick-up point is created in the store and the elderly (the largest demographic group) are no longer reliant on others to obtain their prescription medications and can obtain them over the counter as well.

Our Team

This team consists of five enthusiastic International Development Management students. We are Oliver Klein, Giosuè Käpernick, Lieke Gooijer, Demi Vingerhoets and Shauna de Niet. We were strongly supported by our interpreters Stelli, Alec, Maya, and Kiki. We also want to thank the loving local community who were willing to provide us with knowledge and show us around.

Together we worked hard to come up with a great innovation that can improve the life of the people living in Seltsi.