In brief

Mani Tese’s commitment to justice is aimed, also in Italy, to contrast the imbalance between centers and suburbs that Mani Tese has been fighting for over 50 years in many countries of the world, in the belief that the redemption of every people on Earth passes by redemption of the community to which one belongs.

Turning this commitment into a first-person experience of change is a prerogative that has always been part of the Mani Tese style. For this reason there are numerous subjects through which Mani Tese operates in Italy.

The NGO was born in 1964, both to carry out international cooperation projects and to promote public awareness initiatives in Italy. Cooperatives in Florence, Faenza, Milan and recently in Catania were created in the mid-1980s to carry out social enterprise projects and to propose, through the reuse and recycling of waste, good practices and sustainable lifestyles.

To strengthen the territorial presence of Mani Tese in Italy, local associations were also born in Florence, Naples, Catania, Pratrivero, Faenza and Finale Emilia. Their goal is to act change by intercepting the needs and potentials present in local communities.

Other participation entities directly connected to the NGO in Italy are the Mani Tese groups: in Bologna, Bulciago, Cagliari, Genoa, Gorgonzola, Lucca, Mestre, Milan, Padua, Rimini, Rivoltella, Rome, Treviso and Verbania, they involve volunteers, citizens and Institutions to promote the organization’s solidarity, information and fundraising campaigns.

Finally, occasionally, around 5,000 people make their time available to support the association’s activities.


Mani Tese’s action

Through its network Mani Tese promotes awareness initiatives in Italy, environmental sustainability projects, partnerships with institutional and civil society realities, proposals for social change, volunteering, fundraising, cooperation and co-development.

The need to combine the responsibility of our actions and our lifestyles as citizens of the North of the world with the lives of the citizens of the South and to urge the awareness that world imbalances continually intertwine our daily lives is the challenge that Mani Tese has taken through second-hand markets and the activities of cooperatives that operate by promoting virtuous circuits linked to consumption, mobility and attention to margins.

The promotion of equality and dignity for every human being takes concrete form in the projects of social cohesion and contrast to the unease carried out in the suburbs by the Mani Tese associations that have developed welcoming and inclusion actions towards marginalized and excluded subjects.

The promotion of a new development model is implemented through the experimentation of ethical economics, agroecology and bio-family agriculture in the territories where Mani Tese is present and the realization of global citizenship education courses in a formal context (schools) and non formal (voluntary camps, political schools).

country details

28 Ranking [UNDP, 2017]
3/1000 [younger than 5 years old. UNICEF, 2018] 2/1000 [younger than 1 year old. UNICEF, 2018]
0.05‰ [UNAIDS, 2018]
>99% [WHO, 2018]
Responsible for Mani Tese's members and Universal Civil Service, General Secretary of Federation Mani Tese


My name is Chiara Cecotti, I met Mani Tese at my first work camp in 1982 in Treviso, I was 18 years old. In September of that year, we founded the Treviso Group, in which I am still volunteering: many fields, many tents, many conferences, many meetings and many train trips to meet the other volunteers of Mani Tese and participate in the construction of the Association in those years.  My […]