Myrtillo Café

EYES: Youth Employability and Social value



Private Initiatives


Athens, Greece

General Description of the project

MYRTILLO is a Social Cooperative Enterprise with a Special Purpose (the integration of vulnerable groups into the labour market) incorporated under Law 4019/2011.

Myrtillo has been operating as a cafeteria and arts centre since October 2013. It is an innovative self-supporting business and training entity, where all employees are jointly responsible for its viability.

The philologist Georgia Vamounaki, mother of a child with learning difficulties, created Myrtillo Cafe (cafeteria, production laboratory and space of Speech and Art), the first business in Greece that offers people with special abilities a decent place to work and education or as she prefers to call it “An exit to life”


-Support of our disadvantaged fellows, not in the form of 'protected (and often meaningless) employment', but of a dynamic entrance into real life and real work. -Emphasis on the values ​​that emanate from the universal ontological foundation that the deep structure of the psyche and its needs does not differ from person to person. -Cooperation between the most advantaged and most disadvantaged social groups, which can bring great benefit to both, as the special talents of both come to complement one another. -Raising social awareness in relation to the practical support of people with disabilities. Goals are fuelled by the hope that the labour market will soon open its doors to vulnerable groups when it realizes how much important work they can offer and how their particular talents can be exploited.

Social motivation

Linked to a cause, Linked to a community

Grupal dimension and territorial reach

-The Governing Board is elected every 3 years by all the members of the Social Cooperative Enterprise, the working staff of Myrtillo are legally enrolled members, and all the rest, of the non-working and non-salaried members work as volunteers. -Local territorial reach

Transferability and replicability and contribution in terms as “what can we learn about this good

The main aim of this initiative is to structure social entrepreneurship by enabling the vulnerable beneficiaries to do things themselves. This café “teaches” that a culture in which respect and the rights of every human being are well institutionalised is necessary and acceptance of the person with a difference should not be left to the individual's own personal ambition. Under this system, people with disabilities could easily integrate into society in a functional way and contribute their talents to society. Also, although it operates as a self-reliant enterprise without financial subsidies, there has been invaluable voluntary contribution by members and continuing support by loyal customers who join the café or organise events of all kinds at its premises. Equally, there are individuals and organisations who have donated equipment and friends who have offered precious advice and moral support.

To which SDG contributes

SDG 8. Decent work and economic growth SDG 10. Reduce inequalities SDG 11. Sustainable cities and communities