Espriu Foundation takes part at IHCO assembly


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Espriu Foundation takes part at IHCO assembly

The Espriu Foundation took part on Sunday, 13 October at the General Assembly of the IHCO, (International Health Cooperative Organisation), held in Kigali, Rwanda.

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At the gathering the leaders of health cooperatives from the different countries belonging to the organisation shared their experiences and perspectives as to healthcare cooperative activities and the challenges for the future.

Espriu Foundation CEO Carlos Zarco, who chairs the international body since 2017, raised the need to increase public awareness of the important role played by cooperatives in health systems. Dr Zarco stated that the goal was to make the IHCO a flagship for all cooperatives working in the healthcare sector, as well as those organisations consolidated in other business sectors and which wish to extend the services they provide into the sphere of health.

"We are making progress, but still have a long way to go. We need to convince governments and civil society of the potential that the cooperative enterprise model has in advancing towards the UN's 2030 Agenda," asserted Dr Zarco.

As well as reviewing the organisation's activities and deciding on the cornerstones of the working plan for 2020, the members of the assembly ratified the joining as a member of the cooperative Lok Swasthya Mandli, based in the state of Gujarat in Western India.

Founded in 1990 with the support of the SEWA (Self-Employed Women's Association), this Indian cooperative provides services to some 600,000 people in the field of primary care, health education, and the distribution of pharmaceutical products and traditional Indian medicines.

The Espriu Foundation representatives likewise took part at the General Assembly of the International Cooperative Alliance, which debated such matters as a strategic plan within the context of the Second Cooperative Decade 2020-2030.  This plan sets the strategic objectives of championing and promoting cooperative identity, introducing the cooperative model to educational systems, and achieving the institutional support of international bodies.

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