The project – BRIDGES – Broadening positive Reflections on the Issue of Disability, Generating Empowerment for Stakeholders – is financed by the European Commission, through funds granted by the National Erasmus + Education and Training Key Action 2 (KA2) – Cooperation for innovation and exchange of good practices (Strategic Partnerships for Adult Education) with reference number 2019-1-PT01-KA204-061388.

This project supports in a holistic and integrated approach and through really innovative products the capacity building of factors concerning and dealing with disability in society; disabled members of society should enjoy the right of a full and decent life in proper conditions ensuring dignity, selfreliance promotion and facilitation of their active participation in community and it is up to the family environment, training providers and professionals along with society reflections and stakeholders-in general- to ensure that disability deserves equal chances and potentiality.

The researches have shown that beyond the positive reflections and the ‘elimination’ of exclusive practices or discrimination these people face or experience, what is of high value for them is their access to the right of being employed or being given as much as possible employment opportunities; lack of participation in the workplace can put people with disabilities at high risk of poverty and at low level of life quality while on the contrary, facilitation of relative services or training of specific persons acting as the ‘bridges’ between the disabled and the society & employers or the labor/market sector can lead to positive integration results.

What is central is the implementation of efficient and effective actions towards the disabled people participation in society through the recruitment and reinforcement of specific supporters: these people will undertake the role of bridging disabled with society, support them in the labor activation, of mentoring in their employment and of acting as proper and appropriately channels. Thus, in BRIDGES project, the target groups will be public servants and public services representatives, relative professionals, NGOs & CSOs members, members of family environments, who will be trained to support disable people in the employment process and integration procedures.

The project aims to:

a) Strengthen and reinforce via training and relative tools those key factors involved directly or indirectly with the disabled people integration and the positive reflections on the issue of disability;

b) Create content resources towards the proper training of specific persons, who will act as mentors, ‘intermediators’ & ‘intercoachers’ for people with disabilities and their integration; to cultivate to them special knowledge and skills (as also to act as access-point) such as for example the skills of career counseling, performance coaching, emotional intelligence & empathy building, behavior change and work culture, self activation and symbol work, sustainability & disability, knowledge of labor services provisions, expertise on the supported models of employment, etc, in parallel with labor mapping and contextualization skills for people with disabilities;

c) Take advantage of the opportunities offered by ICT and digitize the quality of learning content; d) Create and deliver innovative products and training tools- as tailored needs learning resources – based on differentiation methodologies and adult education approaches; e) Promote public campaigns and initiatives on positive and respectful attitudes towards disabled members of community with targeted actions for market and labor key-players.

The project includes 7 partner entities:

P1 – ATLÂNTICA (Portugal)

P2 – Xenios Polis. Culture, Science and Action (Greece)

P3 – CSI Center for Social Innovation Ltd (Cyprus)

P4 – INEUROPA SRL (Italy)

P5 – Asociación Caminos – Asociación para el intercambio educaión y desarrollo social (Spain)

P6 – Meath Community Rural and Social Development Partnership Limited (Ireland)

P7 – Akademie Klausenhof gGmbH (Germany)

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication [communication] reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein. Project Number: 2019-1-PT01-KA204-061388.