With arrival of political and demographic changes the ownership structure also significantly changed (according to current surveys, about 1/3 of active working population is employed in private sector). Although much has been done on development of entrepreneurial spirit lately, as well as on development of small and medium enterprises, citizens are still not fully informed about self-assistance and self-employment ways.
Cooperatives represent a well developed socio-economic movement in multicultural environment. It is estimated that there are about 100 000 cooperatives in Europe with 155 million of members and 2.6 million of employees. Cooperatives are defined as business-economic, social and educational project, the principal motto of which is: „We work together for the common good, but also towards the common goals.“
As forms of independent association of members, who volunarily connect in order to satisfy their economic, social, cultural and other needs, cooperatives in South and East Europe have developed into a form of citizens' action and possibility of solving, that is of decreasing growing unemployment and social tensions. Mission of this project is productive employment and diminishing unemployment of all ethnic groups, support for entrepreneurial initiatives, establishment of a new system of social values, support for sustainable local community development models and citizens' self-association.