Successful inclusion project at Brav

Ferdmagasinet 02-2019 BRAV kasper og therese, Foto Byavisa Tore Steffens Lillehammer Byavis in

Four young people have secured work through jobs specially adapted for them at Brav in Lillehammer. This enhances their quality of life and gives them a meaningful way of spending their time, creating value for both Brav and society.

“They work closely with our permanent employees and have become part of the gang here. It has worked really well”, explains Brav’s Operations Manager, Torbjørn Haugen, to Ferd Magazine. He adds that Brav’s experience so far is that these new employees are both reliable and determined, and otherwise are just as diverse as everyone else.

NAV's Permanent Adapted Work initiative
The four young people work three days a week at the Swix centre in Lillehammer. They have done so since September last year when the Ferd-owned company entered into a collaboration with Lipro Kompetanse, a work and inclusion company. The basis for the collaboration is the desire to deliver results via NAV’s (the Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration’s) Permanent Adapted Work initiative.

“NAV seeks out candidates for the initiative, but we as a work inclusion enterprise employ them. To be given a place the candidates have to be in receipt of disability benefit or to have started the process of being granted disability benefit”, explains Therese Bull-Engelstad, the head of HR and marketing at Lipro Kompetanse in Lillehammer.

Purely practically, the adapted jobs are organised such that Brav pays for the work that is done, while Lipro Kompetanse employs the young people and has the responsibilities of an employer and is responsible for following them up. These services are purchased by NAV, while the young people themselves receive bonus payments on an hourly basis for the work they do, in addition to their disability benefit.

Good to be of use
“Our work consists of labelling and packing different ski products, such as glide waxes, klisters, ski wax and sprays for ski skins. We have also done some work labelling clothes and other items from the warehouse, and we processed goods returned after the Vasaloppet race”, explains Therese, who has worked at the Swix centre ever since the start of Swix’s collaboration with Lipro Kompetanse. She adds that she very much likes her job.

“It is social and I have nice colleagues. The tasks we are asked to complete are well-defined, easy to learn, and important for the company, and I am earning money. The Swix centre team is also really nice, and having a job to go to is important for me. It creates a routine for my days, and I like to feel that I am useful”, she explains.

From the heart – and profitable
“For our part, we think it is exciting to be part of a new and different project. It’s great to be involved in giving someone a chance. And, even if the idea of being inclusive is something we believe is right in our hearts, it is also profitable - for us, for society and, importantly, for the young people concerned -  their self-esteem increases as a result of their experience of mastering something, of being useful, and of being part of a social community in a place of work”, comments Torbjørn Haugen.

Read the whole article (only in Norwegian) in the Ferd Magazine

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