Helsinki España’s project is aimed at the University world to promote action for poverty alleviation within the frame of University Social Responsibility.


Madrid, 28 July 2014.- With more than one billion people living in extreme poverty around the world, mobilizing all segments of society to find solutions and help alleviate poverty is becoming increasingly important. The Post 2015 Development agenda, promoted by the United Nations, thus exposes the mobilization of society as one of the priorities, which inspired the Spanish NGO Helsinki España – Human Dimension, along with Santander Universities Division, UNIVERSIA and the University Rey Juan Carlos, to launch Universities for Poverty Alleviation.

The mobilization that was presented at the Third International Conference of Rectors held in Rio de Janeiro, aims to create a commitment from the universities that support and value all the initiatives coming from universities around the world already dedicated to the topic of alleviating poverty, and also to motivate and inspire those centers that have less experiences working in this field.

Helsinki España, the promoter of the mobilization, is preparing several actions in its support. Firstly, to convene to all the Universities that wish to bring greater visibility to their work to participate in this mobilization. This way, the website www.universitiespa.org can be complemented with good practices, publications, videos and contacts to help inform and connect with the entire university community.

Secondly, the organization also wants to encourage those schools, teachers and university students interested in improving the actions taken in this matter, to influence their universities with three objectives:

– To introduce topics related to poverty alleviation in the syllabus involving both students and academics.

– To promote research that can be carried out in the field and have a positive impact.

– To encourage the transfer of knowledge between universities through good practices, talent exchange, etc.


Furthermore, thanks to the collaboration established with Santander Universities Division, University Rey Juan Carlos and UNIVERSIA, Santander Financial City will host a 1st International Congress of Rectors for poverty alleviation in June 2015 and expects participation of 70 University Rectors from all around the world, along with various personalities related to poverty alleviation and the establishment of the Post 2015 Development Agenda. The purpose of this conference is to set the specific objectives that define the project action plan and to formalize an institutional commitment of the participating universities.


In the upcoming weeks Helsinki España hopes to establish a Steering Committee, composed of Rectors from some of the best universities in Latin America, to lead all these initiatives.

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