More in the focus of the SIV project: Long-term unemployed people with disabilities 


The re-entry into working life of long-term unemployed people with disabilities needs to be re-energised. This is the clear call of many associations in Germany and also in the EU. The SIV project in Germany has now also made this goal clearer. In pursuit of this goal, Social Enterprise Neue Arbeit, the lead partner of the SIV project, is currently developing new forms of placement based on the voucher approaches that were already devised within the scope of the project. Interested?

Specification for Germany

Hiring an employee with a disability is often a particular challenge for a company especially in Germany, where the recruitment of disabled people often involves great uncertainty. Apart from legal questions, it is often not clear enough for which activities a person from this target group can basically be employed. The requirements of job profiles that are oriented towards recognised professions are often only manageable to a limited extent due to the disability. Questions arise such as: What kind of work can be done? How can the company benefit from this work? 

Practical and process-oriented support directly on site in the company can be effective here. For this reason, the social enterprise Neue Arbeit has further individualised the placement process for this special target group within the framework of the voucher model and supplemented it with special elements of job coaching and job designing.  A special coaching that precedes the placement and offers targeted support for digital literacy as well as the development of so-called future skills, also played an important role here. Therefore, this special coaching focuses on factors that are decisive for the placement in work in times of the New Work. Further on, a job designer identifies together with the company ideas for suitable activities for the person with disabilities to be employed, analyses the requirements of the selected activities and thus "carves" a suitable job profile for this person. This should provide relief for other employees so that they can concentrate on their core activities. Adapting the activities to the requirements of the person with disabilities takes place within the framework of the trial phase, which is financed by the social impact voucher over a period of up to three months. If the company decides to employ the person after the trial, additional job coaching can be arranged in order to secure the job in the longer term. With this approach, we want to further improve the sustainability of the achieved placement results.

The European perspective

The Social Impact Voucher (SIV) project, which is being implemented in eight Central European countries as part of Interreg Central Europe program, is being used here as an innovative instrument to help improve the situation of unemployed people with disabilities. This is not only done for, but also as a joint effort with the people of this target group in the spirit of the UNCRPD (read more on the website:

In some of the other partner countries as well, the focus is shifting towards this clearly underprivileged group of people.  More specifically, new models of placement for this special target group are also being introduced here. Both here and in Germany, it is often the case that employers "buy their way out" of their responsibility to employ people with disabilities due to a lack of appropriate support and prefer to pay compensations rather than hire. With this new form of social impact vouchers, the project community is trying to break these well-established patterns. This will become even more important in the light of the Covid-19 crisis because, after one year since its debute, it becomes clear that, besides the low qualified, especially women and people with disabilities will have to face the most challenges on the labour market.

Social Enterprise NEUE ARBEIT gGmbH