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Projects  -  Keynotes


abz*kompetent und gesund (Daniela Schallert)

The project abz*kompetent und gesund (translation: abz*competent and healthy) by abz*austria started in 2011 with the aim of enhancing the conditions and work satisfaction of female mobile care workers aged 35 and older.

The care sector is largely female and low paid while requirements are complex and societal recognition low. Conditions can be improved and women employed in the mobile care services strengthened only through a joint effort of the different stakeholders. With abz*kompetent und gesund this is achieved through a close cooperation with companies in the mobile care sector and the integration of stakeholders in the field of health, social and employment policies.

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Blixtjobb (Victoria Engman-Broadley & Johanna Nordenskjöld)

The aim of Blixtjobb is to empower and reintegrate homeless and/or people living with substance abuse into society by procuring them occasional jobs like easy construction work, gardening, paintning or cleaning. The idea is to integrate the target group through entrepreneurship instead of social work. They get a regular pay for their work. 30% of customers are individual households and 70% companies, many of whom regard this commitment as part of their corporate social responsibility. The project is financed through the customers buying the services that Blixtjobb provides.
Blixtjobb can be seen as a method that creates empowerment, reduces substance abuse as well as marginalisation and exclusion. On a national economic level it has the effect of moving people from receiving benefits to contributing to society by the payment of personal taxes (taxes are deducted from wages by Blixtjobb) as well as empowering the individual.

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Graefewirtschaft e.V. (Heike Birkhölzer)

Graefewirtschaft e.V. is a social enterprise creating jobs for migrants and refugees in the borough of Berlin-Kreuzberg. Graefewirtschaft runs different businesses:

  • a restaurant, “die Weltküche”
  •  a catering service
  • kitchens  catering for schools, kindergartens and daycare centres
  • a canteen kitchen in the Berlin district of Marienfelde
  • household services and und care for the elderly


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Internetcafé ZwischenSchritt (Gertrud Unterasinger)

Founded in April 2013, the internet café ZwischenSchritt is a day centre for formerly homeless persons aiming at closing the digital gap for the target group and counter exclusion. The project’s primary target group are formerly homeless people; it does not matter, however, if they live in one of Vienna’s homeless shelters or already have their own apartments. ZwischenSchritt is based on a peer-to-peer approach: The people who run the internet café are formerly homeless persons themselves.


Jobbtorg and the projects FILUR and Merit (Camilla Näslund)

Jobbtorg is an initiative of the Stockholm Labour Market Administration introduced In 2008 to activate and bring back into work unemployed people who are dependent on social welfare benefits. Part of Jobbtorg’s mission of working is to test initiatives trying out new ways of working for different projects and single out the best ones to develop regular activities at Jobbtorg. Camilla Näslund, Coordinator Labour Market Administration at Jobbtorg Stockholm, gave a presentation on Jobbtorg’s approach to foster innovation: Jobbtorg is conducting different projects with the aim to try out new methods and ways of working, the best of which are then adopted as regular activities at Jobbtorg.


JOBLINGE (Richard Gaul)

About 8% of young people in Germany have problems entering the labour market. JOBLINGE – initiated by The Boston Consulting Group GmbH und die Eberhard von Kuenheim Stiftung der BMW AG – brings together stakeholders from the public and the private sector as well as civil society in order to help these young people to integrate into the labour market.

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Networking Europe (Maria Fladvad)

Peter Ramsden, in his keynote speech, argued for a “free movement of ideas”, highlighting the importance of mutual learning. The aim of the Stockholm based, ESF-funded project Networking Europe (conducted from March 2012-June 2014by the Sensus Study Association, represented by Maria Fladvad) was exactly this: Innovation not always develops out of something completely new. Often, new solutions come about through the melting for different ideas.

The project has built on this potential and aimed to develop various skills through increased cooperation with other EU Member States, especially those in the Baltic Sea region. A special focus was on enhancing skills that help creating a more inclusive labour market. To achieve this, networks were built, in particular around the Baltic Sea region in some of the areas prioritized by the EU Commission for the upcoming Structural Funds period (2014-2020).

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RUFFBOARDS (Melanie Ruff)

Under the slogan “second chance for people and boards”, the social start up RUFFBOARDS produces uniquely designed, high-end longboards by upcycling used snowboards in a highly integrative production process:  Employing ex-offenders in the manufacturing process, social impact is maximized.

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Schülerpaten Dachverband e.V. (Sherief El-Helaifi)

Schülerpaten Dachverband e.V. organises one on one tutoring between mentors and mentees. Mentors, usually university and doctorate students, are matched with children from families with migrant backgrounds. Sherief El-Helaifi, Co-Founder, Board Member, Head of Public Relations at Schülerpaten and student at Technische Universität Berlin, explained how, unlike most other mentoring projects, Schülerpaten focuses on the family and peer environment instead of schools. The reason behind this is that the migrant families’ relationships with the schools are often not conducive to establishing meaningful mentoring relationships.


Social Impact GmbH (Norbert Kunz)

Nobert Kunz, Managing Director of the Social Impact GmbH, gave a presentation on how the creation, implementation and scaling up of innovative ideas can be supported. Building on networks, crowdfunding and the exchange of ideas and design thinking processes, Social Impact GmbH provides various support mechanisms for social entrepreneurs. In the start-up phase, social entrepreneurs are offered financial consulting and are provided with an idea finding as well as crowdfunding platform and can be supported in establishing partnerships with welfare organisations.To guarantee a lasting impact, coaching is also provided provided in the stabilising and scaling up phase. Networking and the sharing of ideas are fostered in co-working labs and special support is offered of social start-ups in rural areas.

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Vienna’s Vocational Training Guarantee and the project spacelab (Dr. Eva Krennbauer)

Austria is a pioneer in tackling youth unemployment: Like Finland, it already has adopted a vocational training guarantee that serves as a model for the European wide Youth Guarantee. Young people in Austria who cannot find a regular job or vocational training offer within three months can start vocational training in state funded training workshops – and later change to vocational training in companies if possible.  
Vienna has its own Vocational Training Guarantee, which puts special emphasis on a cooperative strategy providing an example of how the problem of youth unemployment can be tackled in a joint effort by the different actors involved from schools, public authorities and social partners to the Public Employment Service.


Volkshilfe Österreich: THARA (Verena Fabris und Gordana Djordjevic)

In 2005 the Volkshilfe Österreich started the initiative THARA aimed at integrating Roma and Romnija into the labour market.
THARA’s aim is the integration of Roma and Sinti into the labour market in order to improve the socio-economic situation of the target group in Vienna and to create awareness in society for the existing inequalities and discriminatory practices Roma and Sinti are faced with.



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