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Hub Employment Ecosystems for People with Disabilities (HeePD)

A HeePD Centre (Hub) that combines recruitment,training, skills,jobs with accessible transport at convenient site locations for PwD's.

Photo of Riad Masoet
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What problem does your idea solve?

The problem for People with Disabilities from disadvantaged communities and countries is residential locations are far from schools, universities, training institutions and jobs. Lack of accessibility, accessible sufficient acccessible transport solutions creates an unequal playing field. HeePD Hub Employment Ecosystems for People with Disabilities solves the problem by combining all the elements of interviews, training, jobs, at a Hub location with transport solutions within a HeePD Ecosystem.

Explain your idea

Luwazi needs to get up very early in the morning every day as he lives in Khayelitsha which is 30 kilometers from the CBD in Cape Town. He has to take 3 taxi buses to get to the CBD, to get to either a job interview, training or work. Most of the time transport picks or drops far from the required location as it's only public transport.Hemaplegic with calipers due to brain injury. He lives in a disadvantaged community in Cape Town who struggles to find a job worsened by distant work locations and inaccessible transport. He is a Hemaplegic with calipers due to brain injury. Lives in a disadvantaged community in Cape Town who struggles to find a job worsened by distant work locations and inaccessible transport, and him not able to write, which worsens his predicament to get a job. HeePD Hub Employment Ecosystems for People with Disabilities solves the Employment problem and full Inclusion of People with Disabilities in the workplace and society my modeling and and showcasing what is possible. And then porting into corporate partners with HeePD.

Who benefits?

The People who will benefit are people with disabilities across the disability spectrum, with varying skills, education and experience. The predominant or primary impact are +-150 million people with disabilities between the age of 18-45 in disadvantage communities in developing countries in Africa, where Accessibility, Accessible Transport and Equal Opportunity for People with Disabilities for jobs is on an extremely unequal playing field. We plan to roll out a minimum of 20 Hubs per country.

How is your idea unique?

HeePD Hubs is an incubated venture/project of Standing Tall Recruitment and Advisory, a commercial Disability Solutions company providing recruitment, Disability Sensitisation and Awareness Training and Workshops for companies and candidates with disabilities. We are uniquely experienced and our boards of directors and HeePD Advisory Board are leaders in their respective fields. There is no other similar competitor or similar solutions in the market. The solutions that are currently available are a zero sum game where penetration of formal permanent employment for People with Disabilities, where less than 1% of the corporate labor market are people with Disabilities. We are likely to be successful given our concept support from SAB Foundation Disability Trust, part of SAB Miller-Annheiser-Busch to develop a pilot Minimum Viable Product/Proposition, and CSI from BNP Paribas-RCS Group for Standing Tall in South Africa, which anchors the HeePD Hub Employment Ecosystems.

Tell us more about you

We are a Disability Solutions company incubating the HeePD Hub Employment Ecosystems for People with Disabilities, with over of 3 boards, Purple Cow Ventures, Standing Tall, and the HeePD Advisory Board. All companies were founded by me, a Corporate and Commercial Executive for 22 years after being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and Brain Cancer, 14 and 6 years ago respectively, leaving me a Hemaplegic.We are based in Cape Town, South Africa.We do this full time with a dedicated project team.

What are some of your unanswered questions about the idea?

The elements of the Monitoring and Evaluation where we need to learn from the pilot is the following: - Cost and Challenges with each Hub Ecosystem and Roll-out - Forecasting accurately the number of people with disabilities to be employed within each Ecosystem in each location, country with its associated costs of transport, recruitment and training, general office running costs. - Understand the Political, Social, Economic, Technology and Legal Factors in each country that create enablers and barriers for a HeePD Hub.

Where will your idea be implemented?

  • Ghana
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Mozambique
  • Nigeria
  • Rwanda
  • South Africa
  • Tanzania
  • Uganda
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

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 for-profit company (including social enterprises).

Idea Maturity

  • Piloting: I have started to implement my solution as a whole with a first set of real users.

How has your idea changed based on feedback?

Our idea has been improved through active engagement with stakeholders including employees, end user Beneficiaries, candidates with disabilities and employers of PwD''s, and community engagement with disabilities NGO's. Key Impovement is categorized along themes validated by quantitative and qualitative research: Transport, Skills Development and Training at s central centre. A Improvement in our model is the designed Inclusion of abled bodied employees working with people with disabilities at a meaningful level to normalize disability in the workplace. An employer driven improvement is the port the HeePD Ecosystems Model into their workplaces through Partnerships with HeePD and Support through Standing Tall with our transport for people with disabilities with ZiPD.

Who will implement this idea?

We have a dedicated project team, who also have disabilities, with a HeePD Advisory Board with board directors and Executive Team from Standing Tall and and Purple Cow Ventures to guide and support. We also have 33 interns on a short term contract 6-12 months who were unemployed previously, including 10 with disabilities to support project administrative tasks as we develop the pilot and develop and implement each Ecosystem. The core project full time and contract interns team is based onsite.

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?

Applying action based, end user client and beneficiary engagement with communities and employers, we will establish clear shared value models with each stakeholder. Each shared value model with each stakeholder will have clear and detailed Monitoring and Evaluation criteria to measure the success of HeePD Hub/s within the stakeholder Ecosystem and the HeePD Hub Ecosystem as a whole. Decision will be influenced with guidance of the HeePD Advisory Board, and Executive Managing Board, and Foundation, including Ecosystem partners.

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

What attracted me was the design-thinking, collaborative approach to develop and squeeze the best innovation from the core idea, to get the best continuous improvement for a decision of who gets funding. It also allows more time for reflection, research and rapid prototyping and testing, with action research methods.

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?

Our quantitative research has validated our hypothesis that the biggest challenges of our end user is Transport and finding jobs as a Person with a Disability. The systems level challenges are Transport and Access to Training and Skills Development. The Transport system is inaccessible to People with Disabilities creating artificial barriers and worsening an unequal playing field to access all types of education. Access to secondary education is less likely, making vocational and company training remote. The barriers then become significant as PwD's do not acquire the required experience to access the open job market, exacerbating the perception that are no skilled People with Disabilities, because there are relatively few. This promotes the exclusion of PwD's from the recruitment brief.

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?

Our 2020 vision is to have a minimum of 20 Hubs creating 500 jobs per Hub and 10 times more indirect jobs per Hub through the Ecosystem impacts of each Commercial Ecosystem. How do we replicate and implement each Hub in each country and regional differences across Africa adapting to differing Transport, Education & Government regulations and constraints,dealing with cultural differences with the treatment of People with Disabilities to scale challenges of jobs for +-150m PwD's in Africa.

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?

  • Under 5 paid, full-time staff

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

  • We are a registered entity, but not in the country in which we plan to implement our idea.

My organization's operational budget for 2016 was:

  • Between $50,000 and $100,000 USD

If your team/idea/organization has a website, please share the URL below.

Attachments (1)

HeePD Presentation_BB_Overview-2.pdf

HeePD Hubs Summary Overview


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Great work Riaad and all your team mates. I belive this is one of a kind initiative in the African continent, may Allah bless you and keep you so that we are certain that people with disabilities will forever be cared for.

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