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Get Hired! - Employment Support Program for Persons with Disabilities

We will engage with employers to create more job opportunities and support job-seekers with disabilities to get hired to on those jobs.

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What problem does your idea solve?

A lot of persons with disabilities have some college degree and a strong desire to get a job. However, they are often confused on where to start. Because of decades long discrimination prevailing in our society, they are not even sure if they actually can get a job! Employers, on the other hand, also have doubts about hiring them because of the myths they have heard about disability & thinking it only on charity basis. This has result on high unemployment rate of persons with disabilities.

Explain your idea

This idea has two phases that take place simultaneously. First is preparing job seekers. In this phase we identify job seekers with disabilities from various sources like local organizations, self-help groups, independent living centers and if necessary advertisement. We will have placement support staffs who will work with all of these identified job seekers to prepare them for current job market. This involves identifying their core skills, connecting with training providers if they do not have sufficient marketable skills, providing job counseling, preparing their resume and help in job application if necessary. The next phase that goes simultaneously with previous is preparing employers. This involves mostly making employers aware about disability. We have seen that presenting business benefits examples (cases) after hiring persons with disabilities have often helped to bring employers on board. We will work with individual employers, employers’ associations, Human Resources associations to lobby our case. We will never try to present job seeker's disability before his/her skills. Once job seekers and employers both are ready; our staffs do task analysis of various jobs that are available and if necessary modify them (without altering objective) to make it accessible for specific kind of impairment our job seekers has. We will work with employers to make sure various accommodations are in place so that employee with disability can do his/her job efficiently.

Who benefits?

Young people with disabilities in Kathmandu (but scalable to whole country if resources available) will benefit most. We will try and involve those with severe disabilities also because they are mostly left behind in program like these. Also women with disabilities will be given priority. Apart from that, Employers in Nepal will also benefit from the skills these employees with disabilities has to offer to business. At last, economy of society and country will also be benefited in the long run

How is your idea unique?

This idea is unique because the basis for job placement we have considered in this idea are skills. We believe that every individuals (with disability or not) has specific skills that makes him perfect match to at least one type of work. Even in some cases where job seekers with disabilities might not be able to acquire marketable skills (because of the exclusion they faced), we will connect them with such skills providers. However, we will never go to employers asking for jobs because someone has a disability. Traditional employment programs in our country are focused only on providing trainings to individuals. These programs has a mindset that these training will eventually get them hired. They never talk about finding the skills of individual and working with them side by side from the beginning until they have a job. Also unique aspect of our idea is we make employers our strong stakeholders and work with them side by side during the whole process so that they are fully on-board.

Tell us more about you

NFDN is national umbrella body of persons with disabilities. We represent more than 350 organizations working for promoting the rights of persons with disabilities throughout the country. NFDN has been leading disability rights movements in Nepal since 1993 through its working strategies - Advocacy, Awareness raising, Capacity building, Networking & Collaboration. We work with Government and various I/NGOs. We have wide range of donors, partners and stakeholder. We have 25 staffs nationwide.

What are some of your unanswered questions about the idea?

We are figuring out the best strategies to engage private sector into our idea. We recognize that private sectors are important stakeholders in this idea because they are the ones who will eventually create jobs. However, we also know it is not very common that NGO and Private sector works together for a cause unless it is Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR) initiatives. We have identified working with employers association and other professional associations like Human Resource Society will give a lot of advantage to approach the employers and get them to listen us. We will also bring International Labor Organization (ILO) on board at least in some aspect of the project to create and sustain strong relationship with employers.

Where will your idea be implemented?

  • Nepal

Experience in Implementation Country(ies)

  • Yes, for more than one year.

Expertise in Sector

  • I've worked in a sector related to my idea for more than a year.

Organizational Status

  • We are a registered non-profit, charity, NGO, or community-based organization.

Idea Maturity

  • Early Growth/Roll-out/Scaling: I have completed a pilot and am ready or in the process of expanding.

How has your idea changed based on feedback?

While prototyping this idea- we found that we can't only provide service to young people with disabilities. There are many who are more than 40 years (not youths according to definition) but have some skills and need a job. So we have changed our project summary also saying we will support persons with disabilities (not only youth with disabilities) to find jobs. Another factor that is changes is we have now recognized the fact, we should not only target those have some formal educations. There are many who don't have formal education but still can get a job like plumbing, cleaning, household, caregiver etc with appropriate schools. So we will also focus on those kinds of jobs now. There were feedback on sustainability of the project and our team has planned to establish some kind of formal group (like business and disability network) during or at the end of this project so that this work continues at least in some form. We will also lobby with government for inclusive labor laws.

Who will implement this idea?

Our organization will implement this idea. If the resource are available we plan to implement this in 6 Metropolitan Cities of Nepal. At each of these cities, we will have at least one full time staff called Placement Officer. His/Her background with be HR and have the ability to work closely with private sector. S/he will be responsible to find job seekers, skill analysis, and support in the job application process as well. Our organization will coordinate all the project activity from HQ.

Using a human-centered design approach, you may uncover insights that lead to small or foundational changes to your organization’s existing strategy or processes in order to unlock the potential of your idea. How would your organization go about making such changes?

The executive head of our organization is President. Under him there is board of 39 members. Everyone are persons with disabilities. Among those 39 members, there is a working committee that includes President, VP, General Secretary and treasurer. This committee typically any big/small decision. If the decision is more important then the committee makes decision and have this decision approved by full board. We also have executive director who is head of staffs and works side by side with working committee. He also has authority to make some smaller decisions. Our organization is committed towards promoting employment for persons with disabilities. Thus, any decisions required to support this project and achieve more results, will be made without any hassle. Commitment from President.

What is it that most attracted you to Amplify instead of a more traditional funding model?

Amplify gives us tools to test our idea and get end-users feedback. Even in our project, we had missed smaller details which were very important. But because of the tools we get from Amplify Model (User Exp. Map, Prototyping Map, Human Centered Design and Story telling kit), we found we had good idea but need some change in presentation. Thus we used those learning and change our idea a bit. In a nutshell, Amplify shapes raw ideas into something that works in real world.

What challenges do your end-users face? (1) What is the biggest challenge that your end-users face on a day-to-day, individual level? (2) What is the biggest systems-level challenge that affects your end-users?

1. Individual Level: The biggest challenge for someone with disability is knowing how-to of getting a job. Being a member of most marginalized community, most of our end-users have low self-esteem. Because of this, they often don't realize the skills they have and develop them. Also they don't know how to prepare documents needed for job. Most of all, they don't usually have interaction with non-disabled community. 2. Systems-Level Myths and Misconception about disability prevailing in our society and Charity Based Approach are biggest system level challenges. Employers are afraid to hire persons with disabilities because of those myths. State has also made laws that aims to provide charities and support to disabled people rather than empowering them by providing jobs.

Tell us about your vision for this project: (1) share one sentence about the impact you would like to see from this project in five years and (2) what is the biggest question you need to answer to get there?

Impact: By 2022, we aim to mainstream employment of persons with disabilities in Nepali labor market by placing more than 500 PWDs in different jobs (Long term and short-term) as an examples for others to follow. We also aim to establish some systemic intervention like multi-sectorial business and disability network by then to keep this initiative sustainable and ongoing. Question: What's in it for employers? How do we make our project as such it is a win win for both employers and job seekers?

How long have you and your colleagues been working on this idea together?

  • Between 1 and 2 years

How many of your team’s paid, full-time staff are currently based in the location where the beneficiaries of your proposed idea live?

  • Between 20-50 paid, full-time staff

Is your organization registered in the country you intend to implement your idea in?

  • We are registered in all countries where we plan to implement.

My organization's operational budget for 2016 was:

  • Between $100,000 and $500,000 USD

If your team/idea/organization has a website, please share the URL below. (Our previous employment related project)


Join the conversation:

Photo of Nancy Wagi

Kudos!Kindly check what RizikiSource is doing and see if possibilities of collaboration!

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Hi National Federation of the Disabled Nepal Team! We’re excited to share with you feedback and questions from the Amplify team and an external set of experts. We encourage you to think about this feedback as you continue to improve and refine your idea. You are welcome to respond in the comments section and/or to incorporate feedback into the text of your idea. Your idea and all associated comments will all be reviewed during the final review process.

General feedback from experts:
• On expert shared, “This idea is well thought through and solves a core challenge for PWDs.”
• Another expert shared, “This organization seems to be heading in the right direction and thinking about an issue that has a clear impact in the community. They have already dedicated effort and resources to this!”

What experts shared for is this idea desirable, feasible and viable?
• One expert shared, “Desirable: Yes! Certainly seems to be valuable for many members of a community. Feasible: Given the size and capacity of the organization, this seems to be feasible. Viable: Yes, this seems to be a viable pursuit considering the size of the organization and the context in which they are operating."
• Some questions that came up: How will you sustain your model and get funding? How will you build long-term relationships for employment and communication feedback loops to learn and grow your program?

How does this idea consider user needs?
• "Potentially, I wonder what were the details of the pilot you can share around; how many people, how many employers, what employment sectors were involved etc.? More information on the results and learning’s of the pilot would be very useful."

Some questions to think about:
• What are the needs this idea addresses and can you get really specific?
• What relationships do you already have with the employers?
• How will you conduct outreach to those with disabilities and encourage them to partake in the first phase? What is the structure and function of the program? How much of that has been considered at this point in time?

Thanks for sharing the important work you are doing!

In case you missed it, check out this Storytelling Toolkit for inspiration for crafting strong and compelling stories: Storytelling is an incredibly useful tool to articulate an idea and make it come to life for those reading it. Don’t forget - June 4 at 11:59PM PST is your last day to make changes to your idea on the OpenIDEO platform.

Have questions? Email us at

Looking forward to reading more!

Photo of National Federation of the Disabled Nepal

Hello OpenIDEO team,
Thanks for sharing the experts feedback for our idea. All these feedbacks have encouraged all of us here at National Federation of Disabled, Nepal in Kathmandu.
One of the questions you have put forward is about sustainability. In our organization we are implementing this idea (in much smaller scale) since one year and we are coming to end. Now the question of sustainability is more important than ever and during various feedback meetings with stakeholders during the improve phase, we have thought of one idea. There is a federation of Nepalese chamber of commerce and industries (FNCCI) in Nepal and it is a central hub for business people (employers). Inside FNCCI there is a committee called Employers Council. So our friends from business community has shown us the way to incorporate our model in that employer’s council at the end of our project. They have pointed us that we can lobby for a unit that will be responsible for inclusive employment inside that employer’s council. Once it is there, disability community can lobby with them for various program, activities and intervention with them in future.

Another idea that we are thinking currently is establishing a Business and Disability Network in Nepal. There are already many Business and Disability Network around the world which are generally coordinated by ILO. Many big employers around the world are its members. Because, our organization is a federation, we have good relations with ILO also. So during the project, we can work together with ILO, FNCCI, Disability Community and Other professional organization like Human Resource Society to start such network in Nepal. This Network, once formed, will be a key to promote employment for persons with disabilities.

Another Question was need for this project/about the pilot: In 2015, our organization got a grant from Disability Rights Promotion International, Canada (DRPI) to conduct a research of employment rights of persons with disabilities. This research mostly gathered individual experience of those with disabilities themselves. The report of this research suggested that, people with disabilities are not getting jobs because first there is a huge misconception about disability among employers and second people with disabilities are mostly not able to identify their skills and develop those skills into employable skills.

This fact we gathered from our research led us to develop an employment model to test. So with the small amount of grant received from the same donor- DRPI, we hired a placement officer with background of Human Resource Management who then acted as a bridge between employers and job seekers with disabilities. We have been implementing that project for little over 1 year and we have been able to place 40 persons having disabilities in various jobs.

The learning from this pilot was that a proper job readiness training is also required for almost all job seekers with disabilities to understand first the labour market and be really serious about getting jobs.

You have asked about the needs that this idea is addressing. These are the needs:
1. A bridge between business community and disability community
2. Skill Identification technique and career path guidance
3. Getting actual jobs (for persons with disabilities)
4. Economic Independence

Another question is about our existing relationship with employers. In Kathmandu, we have good relation with many employers. Some have also taken our clients (job seekers) as their employees. Some are really keen on getting on board with us. So In Kathmandu, I would say, we are mid-way in term of relation with employers. We still have to make new connection but that should not be very hard by using existing employer connection.

Last question you have asked is about the outreach with job seekers with disability. This is one of those times where we will use the outreach our organization already have. Many people with disabilities are associated in one way or another with disability organization in their locality and almost all of these organizations are our member organization. So we can tap into them and find out about persons with disabilities. Other than disability organization, we have connection with rehabilitation centres like spinal injury rehab centre people who recently acquired disability comes for rehab. These people will also be our job seekers. Similarly outreach program in special schools for disabled, training centres will also gather job seekers.

Summing up, I want to say that our organization has the capacity to implement this idea and make this a reality. As national federation of people with disability, we are committed towards promoting employment of persons with disabilities and help them be economically independent.

We hope that you will provide us an opportunity to partner with you to develop this idea into a project and implement it.
Thank you!

Photo of Ashley Tillman

Thanks for your thoughtful response!

Photo of National Federation of the Disabled Nepal

You are welcome Ashley Tillman 

Photo of Paul Mbatia

Fantastic idea guys. I would be happy to link up and explore how to take the idea forward even if you do not make to the top five but I hope you will.

On the other note, from your description it not clear where the actual problem lies. Is it on the part of the youth that they lack employability skills or the employers who lack the know how of accessible and safe work places or there no structures to connect the the two parties. It would be great to think in depth where the problem is and reflect on how well your proposed intervention is tailored to fit the purpose.

Photo of National Federation of the Disabled Nepal

Paul Mbatia Thanks very much for your comment. We will definitely look forward to connect with you and explore the possibilities of working together.

We will work on twin track approach: that is making both employers and job seekers ready on their part. It means that job seekers will be given job readiness counseling and making them motivated for labor market. Many people with disabilities talks about rights- how employment is their right. But only few talks about the necessary skills for any given jobs. We will work in the mid-way of these two thoughts. We will recognize the employment rights of persons with disabilities and never advocate for jobs on the basis of charity. However, we will also make the job seeker aware that only awareness of rights will not guarantee them jobs and its is the skills they posses; the employers are mostly interested on. A through skill analysis and a job matching is the main theme of our project.

On the other hand we will prepare employers to hire persons with disabilities as their employee. For that, we may need to organize awareness workshop, one and one meeting with employers, delegation meeting with employers association etc. We will also need to create something within in our project , that the employers can take advantage of or want to take hold of. We don't want to present employers as giver and persons with disabilities as taker. We want to make sure there is a win win situation for both parties.

So coming to your question, our project believes that the core problem is the gap between job seekers and business community. We have seen almost all youths who come to our organization to seek support for employment have some skills. Of course they may be raw and need some refinement but still, they possess skills. We have also seen the employers, who are keen to support disability community but don't know how.

So our idea will be a strong bridge to connect these two parties.

Thanks again.

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It's great that you are trying to bridge the employment gap by creating linkages with the private sector. While potentially more time-consuming and resource-intensive, it is also valuable that you want to customise this approach based on the needs of both job-seekers and employers.

Are you planning to target mainly small businesses, large companies and chains, or both?

While focusing on the private sector can be strategic, it is also important to consider long-term sustainability. Are you planning any targeted intervention to advocate with the government for the creation of a more conducive job market for young people with disabilities?

Best of luck!

Photo of National Federation of the Disabled Nepal

Thank you for this feedback. Yes, as you said, our idea is working on both the demand and supply side. That is in one hand, we will prepare employers to hire persons with disability (by business case awareness mainly) and on the other hand, we will work with job seekers to make them ready for the current job market (by accessing skills, connecting with skills providers if necessary, preparing resumes, helping to get interviews and also post employment support).
While it is easy to target small business, their hiring is also very small. Their job openings are also occasional. But we have seen that convincing large companies is difficult, but once succeeded the job placements in these companies are large in number and sustainable in nature. So we plan to engage both small and large employers. Also another target group development organizations. In our countries, Development organizations (Mainly NGOS/INGOS) are among biggest job providers and they have moral obligations to work with vulnerable populations. So we want to work with them also.
Coming to your last question, we have identified Sustainability as one of key issue for our project. So we have also plan to play an role in the formation of a employers council or a business and disability network (ILO has started such groups around the world but not in Nepal). These groups will play important role in sustainability of this project. We will also work/advocate with Federation of Nepalese Chamber of Commerce and Industries (FNCCI) to include inclusive employer award category in their current awards listing.
Lastly, we recognize the importance of mandatory government provisions for employers to create long term job opportunities for persons with disabilities. Being a disability federation, one key working area of our organization is assisting government in the formulation of such laws and provision. Our organization is also currently providing input in the labor law that is being revised. We are also advocating for clear provisions of incentives like tax benefits etc for employers who hires certain percentage of persons with disabilities.
Thank you for your comments. Please let us know if you require any more information.

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