In Sweden, the Solkraft project is combating social exclusion through sheltered employment opportunities
A successful project that creates meaningful job opportunities for people suffering from social exclusion is attracting much interest in Sweden, to the point that it was the subject of a recent TV documentary “A place in the Sun”. The Solkraft initiative of the Skellefteå municipality focuses on the individual and encourages the personal growth and development that allows them to rejoin society and the world of work at a pace adapted to their needs. The long-term unemployed, the chronically ill and others who have severe difficulties getting back into work are among the groups that are referred to Solkraft by employment agencies and other bodies. Jobs are provided in a second-hand goods shop, eight work sites and six coffee shops. Solkraft also has contracts with 20 companies to supply a range of services and products. With ESF support, around 400 people work at Solkraft, and 12% go on to a further job or training.