Persons with disabilities employing their assistants
- Independent Living e.V. Munich
- Country of Implementation
- Western Europe
- First published
“Nothing about us without us’ is the ultimate goal of our work.” Andreas VEGA, Project Coordinator
Living an independent life is based on, among other things, self-representation towards government and social security authorities as well as service providers and/or providers of health insurance. It includes paying taxes and getting tax benefits, applying for subsidies, gaining employment, etc. People with disabilities are often afraid of managing an independent life because they do not know how to begin and where to get support to manage complex tasks.
Solution, Innovation and Impact
The VbA‘s methodology is based on peer support, whereby councillors who are themselves persons with disabilities accompany and support their peers. The councillors’ skills include psychology, empathy, patience, and expertise in diverse fields of work. In the employer model, all decisions are made by the persons with disabilities. They look by themselves for people who want to assist in their households and they conduct the job interviews. Assistants work under the instructions of the employer. VbA provides the employer with payroll services and/or a job exchange internet platform listing vacant posts.
Funding, Outlook and Transferability
Already several independent living centres exist in Germany, which are primarily funded by the government and donations. The counselling is free of charge. The organization is continuing to grow due to the many requests and needs of people with disabilities.