Inclusive Stone Project
About the project
The main goal of the project is the integration of people with disabilities into the world of work and encouraging development of skills and abilities through the stone industry.
Raising awareness of all the subjects involved in the sector of stone is an essential part of the project. Namely, at least 16% of the working-age population of the European Union are people with disabilities, many of whom have the ability and desire to work.
People with disabilities therefore represent a significant potential for contribution and development of the economy and the labor market. Only 50% of people with disabilities are employed, which is already an indicator that the potential of people with disabilities is still largely underutilized. Therefore, it is crucial to respond to the needs of people with disabilities to offer them a better integration into the labor market and their full participation in society.
To achieve the main goal of the project, a series of steps and outputs will be implemented that will guarantee a good effect on the target group and a sustainable effect over time. Raising awareness among companies about the employment of people with disabilities is an important part of the project’s activities, as well as raising awareness in education itself.
The project partners are: CTM – Asociación Empresarial de Investigación Centro Tecnológico del Mármol, Piedra y Materiales (Spain), KSK – Klesarska Skola (Croatia), DNV – German Natural stone Association (Germany), iED – Institute of Entrepreneurship Development (Greece) , FAMDIF-COCEMFE – Federación de Asociaciones Murcianas de Personas con Discapacidad Física y Orgánica (Spain).
The supporters of the project who will also be participants in the implementation of the project’s activities are the Center for Education “Juraj Bonači”, the Croatian Chamber of Commerce and the Croatian Employment Service.
Project number: 2021-1-DE02-KA220-VET-
"INCLUSIVE STONE" PROJECT MEETING IN SPAIN
This all-day meeting was attended by all project partners, namely: iED from Greece, DNV from Germany, FAMDIF-COCEMFE from Spain, Stonemasonry school from Croatia and CTM (Centro Tecnológico del Mármol) being our host.
At the meeting, the key activities of the project and the direction the project would take were agreed upon. The duration of the project is two years. One of the key goals of the project is the inclusion of people with disabilities in the labor market of the stone industry. In order to reach this goal, one of the most important activities is the research of the stone industry market, as well as raising the employers and experts’ awereness about this extremely important topic.
Planned activities include researching of work methodologies, writing of a work manual and developing work and learning methods for people with disabilities, which will provide them with more opportunities for education and employment in the stone industry. In order to achieve this, it is necessary to include in the process not only employers and the employment office, but also schools, school professional services, and institutions that employ a large number of people with disabilities, which are examples of good practice. A seminar is also planned in May 2023 in Pučišća, to which experts will be invited and we will present our previous work and the implementation of all project activities.
"Inclusive stone" project meeting in Greece
Project partners and their associates, as well as associations and companies DNV, CTM and FAMDIF-COCEMFE were present at the meeting. The organizers and leaders of the meeting were partners of iED - Institute of Entrepreneurship Development.
Dissemination of the project so far has been analyzed, but the next steps in this regard have also been agreed upon. We started presenting the project to different employers; primarily stonemasonry related, but also to other employers who are examples of good practice in employing people with disabilities and adapting the workspace to facilitate work process for both employees and employers. We have also started harmonizing legal norms aimed at protecting persons with disabilities, and in this regard, we will also contact the Institute for Expertise, Professional Rehabilitation and Employment of People with Disabilities and the Croatian Employment Service, which produce statistics on the employment of people with disabilities every six months.
At the meeting, iED partners introduced us to the application they created with the help of experts, which is used with VR glasses. The application is used by experts to work with children on the autism spectrum, in which, through various tasks and games, a lot is revealed about the child's emotional development and other essential foundations for the best possible work of experts with children.
We will soon present you the project website, which will have all the useful information in one place, and, what is particularly important, in all the research, seminars and the creation of manuals, different countries are included, which have examples of good practice, but also mention some negative sides as well.. We can certainly all learn from this and make our system better.
VISITING THE PUBLIC COMPANY "DES"
To mark this day, we share with you our visit to one of the largest and most famous public companies in Dalmatia employing more than 54% of people with disabilities.
Director Tamara Plastić and her associate Karmela Šegvić visited the Institution for Employment, Work and Professional Rehabilitation of Persons with Disabilities DES on November 17, 2022, as part of the activities of the "Inclusive stone" project. The DES facility is defined as a protective workshop, and part of their work is aimed at the rehabilitation and protection of people with disabilities.
A protective workshop is an institution or commercial company that provides protective workplaces for people with disabilities who have been determined by the findings and opinion of the center for professional rehabilitation to be employable in protective workplaces, and who, because of their disability, can achieve from 30% to 70% of the expected work efficiency. A protective workshop must have at least 5 employees with disabilities in protective workplaces, and of the total number of employees, at least 51% must be disabled people, of which 20% must be employed in protective workplaces. (Regulations on protective workshops and integrative workshops for employment of persons with disabilities)
The DES public company has an open public kitchen, ready-to-wear production, a printing press that includes screen printing and flexography, and cardboard facility. A considerable part of their work is the production of work/protective clothing for various sectors such as: shipbuilding, construction, trade, health, military, and police.
They also produce a wide range of printed products such as: catalogues, prospectuses, magazines, books, monographs, folders, notebooks, stationery, envelopes, business cards, invitations, stickers, labels, etc. They also print various flags for both state and sports clubs, associations, trade chains, etc.
Machines, as well as production facilities and working conditions, have been modernized and adapted to the needs of employees.
It is worth mentioning that in the DES company it is possible to obtain replacement quotas for all those who have more than 20 employees and pay a contribution for not employing persons with disabilities. Namely, according to the Regulations on determining the quota for the employment of persons with disabilities, the share of employed persons with disabilities in the total number of employees within a firm is prescribed. If employers do not employ the prescribed quota of persons with disabilities, they are obliged to pay contributions. Substitute quotas allow the payment of contributions for non-employment of persons with disabilities to be replaced with the purchase of DES products. This specifically means that by signing a contract with DES, instead of paying a monthly contribution for not employing people with disabilities, you can pay it by purchasing various products that DES produces. Many companies use replacement quotas, which can be considered socially responsible.
For additional info about the DES company, you can visit their website www.des.hr
We would like to thank the director Mrs. Edita Maretić Dimlić and the assistant director Mrs. Silvana Grubišić for the detailed conversation, the agreed potential future collaborations as well as the professional tour of the DES plant.