• Rights, Inclusive Living

Shekulo Tov: Scalable Vocational Engagement Enterprises (VEE)

Shekulo Tov wins the Innovation Awards 2023 for a practice that helps people with complex disabilities get access to good training and rehabilitation services.

Name of practice: Shekulo Tov’s scalable Vocational Engagement Enterprises (VEE)

OrganisationShekulo Tov Group

Country: Israel 

Funding: 75% of the funding comes from selling vocational engagement services to the ministers of Health, Social Affairs, Defence, the Prison authority, and the National Social Security. 25% comes from sales of the Vocational Engagement Enterprises (VEES) products. 

Description of the organisation: Shekulo Tov was founded in 2005 with the objective to promote social inclusion and independent living for people with psychosocial disabilities. To do so, it encourages independence, social activities in the community, supported employment and self-confidence, to enable people with psychosocialdisabilities to realise their potential and achieve their life goals while reducing the stigma of mental illness and promoting social inclusion in their communities.

Description of practice: Shekulo Tov’s scalable Vocational Engagement Enterprises (VEE) provides people with complex disabilities with relevant and meaningful rehabilitation and training programs that are socio-contextual and person-oriented. They occur in units that ‘look and feel’ like any other business. However, they prioritize rehabilitation, placements, and career development over revenue generation. The Vocational Engagement Enterprises (VEE) implement the Integrative Unit Model (IUM), combining practices from Vocational engagement and recovery, sheltered and supported employment, and business philosophy. The service design and branding of the green Vocational Engagement Enterprises (VEEs) are based on unique ongoing community engagement – a strong brand awareness around the promotion of green values and circular economy alongside strict zero donation and zero volunteer policies, ensuring sustainability and maintaining the respect of persons with disabilities as independent members of the mainstream society outside the medical or social context.

Impact generated by the practice: Originally designed for people with complex psycho-social disabilities, today, the model serves people with autism, intellectual, developmental, and physical disabilities. The number of individuals impacted by the practice is 4,500– out of them, 1500 are with independent employee-employer relations and receive our supported employment services and 250 ‘service improvers’ who take part in decision-making.

Scalability & transferability : Shekulo Tov’s P3 model (Preparation, Placement, Progress) is practiced within the Integrative Unit Model (IUM) with a designated job coach in each unit, responsible for training and encouraging service users to try open market employment. Knowing their abilities from daily interactions, they are in a better position to communicate with employers and create a perfect match. Through Shekulo Tov’s partnership with over 500 employers, 95% of employed service users at free employment earn at least the minimum wage. This success ensures stability and continued funding and stakeholder support.

Contact Information: Ophir Peleg, Chief Global Officer, Shekulo Tov