In 2017, the President of the Fondation Orient-Occident in Morocco, Yasmina Filali, opened in Italy the Cooperativa Sociale Oriente-Occidente, with the aim of realizing projects and actions in favour of the integration of migrants and for enhancing employability. The transposition of the Foundation’s expertise to Italy is part of a wider program of internationalization which foresees the expansion of the Foundation’s actions to both Italy, France and Germany.
The first objective of the Cooperative was to start, in partnership with ARCI Lecce, a first phase of experimentation of the Atelier “Migrants du Monde”, a social brand recognized worldwide as a good practice of social enterprise from the Schwab Foundation, an institution directly linked to the World Economic Forum. Originally, “Migrants du Monde” was born as a brand for the embroidery workshop set up at the Fondation Orient-Occident in Rabat, and also represents one of the main activities of the Foundation aimed at the integration of migrant and refugee women within the Moroccan social fabric.
It from the experience already gained in Morocco that the Social Cooperative Orient-Occident has drawn inspiration to start a new workshop in the city of Lecce. The Atelier will start in the locals of the historic Turrisi Palace and in this case, it will see the involvement of migrant and refugee women, having knowledge in the field of traditional embroidery of their respective countries of origin, selected in collaboration with ARCI Lecce, and of Italian women residing in the municipality of Lecce that have experience in the various traditional embroidery of the territory, with the general objective of promoting social cohesion actions through the enhancement of the artisanal and artistic heritage of embroidery and sewing of the local territory and of other cultures of the world.