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Cooperativa Margherita opera prevalentemente nel nella provincia di Vicenza, gestendo servizi convenzionati con l’Azienda Ulss Berica e più di dieci comuni del territorio. L’offerta di servizi si rivolge, inoltre, a privati cittadini residenti in quest’area.
“It is important not only to do, but also to stop and think about what we do and how we do it”
– Lucio Dal Molin, founder –
Cooperativa Margherita is a non-profit organization and social enterprise based on the principle of mutuality. It has been established in 1987 and it offers specific services arising in response to social needs, with a strong vocation for multi-level integration and development of the people involved. Our main target groups are children, youth, elderly and persons with disabilities who are suffering from social exclusion. We provide them with lifelong learning, training and support activities which aim at their growth, self-determination and the containing of cognitive impairments. Each activity is built in connection with the local network, formed by associations, authorities and the citizens themselves.
Moreover, we deal also with different issues focusing on: territorial cooperation and social development, women at work, the economic crisis, human rights and migration. We create training patterns about specific sector and topics – such as about the need of team-working and of drafting and evaluating the projects at the community level – and awareness raising events about emerging territory-related issues – i.e. equity and inclusion, active citizenship and participation, social policies, etc. We aim at activating the local community through the organisation of public events and meetings, fostering active citizenship and responsible participation. In the last years, we are hence proposing ourselves not only as a provider of social and health services, but also as a “cultural vehicle of change” proposing activities for both our target groups and the whole citizenship.
According to our Statute, our purpose is to pursue the interests of the community and to promote human and social integration of citizens through social and health services. Primary goal is to support each person in the exercise of his rights of citizenship and in the construction of paths to autonomy, respecting and valuing differences. To reach this goal the Cooperative works together with public and private agencies, and the entire community, in order to increase information and attention toward the need of integrating and rehabilitating persons in need or marginalized for any reason.
– Territoriality: It is our characteristic style and the foundation-aim. The local territory is considered one of the key stakeholders and players during the planning phase, as well as during the provision of services. This means to organize every program and project taking into account the resources and the needs of the territory. There are many links and relationships, which must be considered, valued and included in every activity.
– “Domiciliarity” (Home-care): It is a path that guides our social work, a way to give voice to any kind of minority. The following realities, if taken into attentive consideration, can radically change the methodology of intervention: asking for the permission of the beneficiary before working with and for him/her; taking into account his/her life-story; looking for the best solution and not for the easiest one; thinking that every activity has to promote participation; giving value to familiar, individual and territorial resources.
– Work with the community: It is a methodology based on the premise that the Community quality life may improve if the relations between people create identity and are based on shared links. This helps to overcome particular interests and to provide better services, but also to develop human capital set to be at the service of others.
The Cooperative provides social-health care and education services, mostly but not only geared to respond to the needs of people with psycho-physical handicaps, elderly, children and youth. Our services are provided both through day-care structures (non-residential), and domiciliary assistance. They include:
At present, the cooperative consists of 60 working members among educators, health workers, social workers, sociologists, trainers, administrative and accounting staff. The Cooperative provides social, health and relational services that allow our beneficiaries to continue to live at home also supporting their families. Currently, they are 68 people with disabilities, 149 children and 88 elders.
We work mainly through agreements with the public sector and guarantee a constant collaboration and the co-design of social interventions.
Since 2013, Margherita is a member of the European Association for Local Democracy. Together we are promoting several EU projects and initiatives, which are presented in the next session of this document.