Taking in laundry as a way of improving prospects


Alliance magazine


LavanderiaArgentine NGO Voluntario Global has launched a project in Buenos Aires that helps train and educate disadvantaged young people through a student-run cooperative. The project Su Lavanderia runs in the Barrio de Soldati area of the city, where only 10 per cent of young people go on to post-secondary education, and so far employs nine young people. Financed by a grant from the YPF Foundation, the students who work in the project pick up, wash, dry, iron and deliver sheets for hostels or restaurants in the area. Although the business is open seven days a week, the work schedule is flexible so that the team members have time to attend classes. The project also offers a study space in the facility for the students to complete schoolwork, something that is not available in several of their homes. As one of the project’s employees, a high school student called Frederico, explains: ‘If you don’t have the studies, you cannot work anywhere. With this education, I will be able to find work. Even when I am here, I can take my books and study when I have a break.’ The project is currently seeking funding to re-equip and to expand its operation to cover a further five hostels.

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