When The Laundry Project started, about 90% of young people living in shantytowns in Argentina could not continue their education after secondary school due to financial instability. Today, this number has been reduced.
"That's how the The Laundry Project started, as a proposal to resolve this situation. The Laundry Project was born out of a necessity at that time, because we had a lot of young people who were finishing secondary school and were abandoning education", explained Armin, founder of Voluntario Global and The Laundry Project.
On July, 2008, The Laundry Project won the YPF Young Entrepreneur Grant and started looking for a place to open the laundry.
In January 2010, the project opened and started working with 2 washing machines, 2 irons, 1 delivery motorcycle and 5 young people participating. Most of the young people working in The Laundry Project, live in Villa Soldati, a small neighborhood in the south west of Buenos Aires.
As the business grew, more youngsters needed work, and so together with Voluntario Global and the help of former volunteers who raised money for the Laundry, they were able to buy a new washing machine, an industrial iron and a dryer. By the end of 2012, they already had 9 young people working with them.
On the 4th March, 2013 —exactly 2 years ago— Armin was killed by two thieves trying to steal his motorbike. He was only 29. Armin dedicated his life to helping young people from his neighborhood, Villa Soldati, to escape a life of poverty and drugs. Armin had started with The Laundry Project when he was only 23 years old.
On Friday August 8th, 2014 the Cooperative bought a new washing machine, a huge moment for the project as it is the first step towards ultimately leading to a world of more responsible economic growth. This was the first time they had bout something wholly by themselves, without the aid of any national grants or volunteering organisations. This day marked a new beginning for the independent life of the Cooperative.
The next step is to acquire new clients such as hotels to expand the production and create more work opportunities which will in turn go towards the pursuit of a greater social economy. They continue to work towards the same goals that Armin set when he and Voluntario Global started the project meaning that even in his absence he is still a fundamental part of this project.