The Espriu Foundation encourages cooperative entrepreneurship to tackle youth unemployment in Europe


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The Espriu Foundation encourages cooperative entrepreneurship to tackle youth unemployment in Europe

The Espriu Foundation forms part of the international project Ecoope, co-financed by the European Union, which aims to introduce innovative and educational actions aimed at European students in secondary or university education.

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The Espriu Foundation raises awareness on the benefit of cooperative entrepreneurship to tackle youth unemployment in Europe. According to the statistical office of the European Union, Eurostat, the unemployment rate for people under 25 in the Eurozone was 17.9% in December 2017.

From the premise ‘Would you like to know more about the cooperative values and model and apply them to your future projects?’, the Espriu Foundation, the fourth largest health cooperative in the world, will welcome to the HLA Moncloa University Hospital in Madrid three students from Italy, Portugal and Spain whose profiles range from law and international business to biochemistry and biotechnology. During approximately one month, from 19 February to 23 March, the students will work in the field of new technologies applied to user service and non-assisted service provision.


The training experience includes a theoretical and a practical part, in which the students will work as a team to find innovative solutions to the challenges cooperatives face. During the first few days, the students took part in a dynamic workshop at the University of Cantabria, in Santander, led by experts in cooperativism and company management techniques, who provided them with the basic tools to implement their ideas in this field.

For Carlos Zarco, Managing Director of the Espriu Foundation, this experience is a first step in raising awareness among young people on the possibilities cooperative companies can offer them in terms of tools for entrepreneurship, allowing them to develop their creativity and business ideas in a real cooperative environment.

Zarco highlighted that the project is due to bring added value to society, as its main objective is to improve youth employability in the European Union. In this respect, he highlighted the role of cooperatives in the future of Europe and the recovery of the economy, as it is a business model that provides employment to 4.7 million European citizens.

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