Are we ready to work together with those who are different from us? Can we perceive people with reduced capabilities as equal?
At the end of May, the Penki Kontinentai group of companies joined the DUOday initiative proposed by the social employment agency SOPA. The goal of the initiative is to create conditions for people with disabilities to integrate into society, so that they can feel significant, try themselves in various professions. A person with a disability and an employee of the company spend one working day together, forming a DUO. A person with disabilities gets acquainted with the work of the company, performs routine work tasks.
On the day of the event, two members of the Lithuanian Welfare Society for People With Intellectual Disability Viltis, Vidmantas and Gintare, came to the Penki Kontinentai. Vidmantas worked with Tomas, assistant to the company's Housekeeping Department, and Gintare studied the secrets of the cafe, which his manager Egle Shabunina shared with her.
As Vaida Praciuviene, the head of internal communication and social responsibility projects at Penki Kontinentai, noted, the company's employees took the initiative positively, did not escape responsibility, and were able to find a common language with those who especially lack communication and support.
Gintare happily served the visitors, set the tables. The girl said that she had long dreamed of trying such a job. Vidmantas was in a great mood, doing landscaping. It was nice to see what pleasure his work and communication give him.
The Penki Kontinentai group of companies has been cooperating with the Viltis Society for over ten years.
“We are glad that the attitude towards people with disabilities is changing, that they can go out into the streets more boldly, visit cafes, museums — and passers-by are no longer surprised by this. We very much welcome initiatives that make such people feel needed,” says Dana Migaleva, the head and founder of Viltis. This year 85 companies from different cities of Lithuania have joined the DUOday initiative. They invited people with disabilities to try themselves in more than 140 jobs.