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And if visually impaired people could work in a synergic and efficient manner?
The association “Aliança dos Cegos” (“Alliance of the Blind”), founded in 1929, shelters adults and elders that do not have financial resources, did not have opportunities in life and that could not count with family support. Currently supported mainly by donations, the institution was able to shelter 150 people. Nowadays, it only can hold 50 people.
As a secondary source of income, the broom factory is a great opportunity of work for these people. Placed inside the association, it contributes to the self-esteem and personal development of them. Despite the good quality of their products and the competitive price of them, the revenue from the factory cover/covered just 30% of their expenses, making the place extremely dependent on donations.
In order to provide financial stability and to improve the quality of life of these people, in 2010 the Project Horizonte was created.
The first part of the project sought to increase their profits, we trained the associates in Business Management and Occupational Safety, we improved the divulgation of their business and the prospection of new clients. Only with these actions, we achieved an increase of 25% in productivity. Also, trying to decrease their personal dependencies, we offered them a basic informatics course.
Still, we have much to do! Now, in the second part of the project, we plan to help them to upgrade their productive process by mapping the risks involved on the production of these brooms, the environmental impact created by the factory and the waste generated by the production of the brooms. All of this, without neglecting the improvement of quality of life from the beneficiaries, through partnerships with doctors and other complementary activities.
Before, they were people that struggled with the prejudice because of their limitations, now, they show that all of us have barriers and that we are able to face and overcome them, finding a horizon of opportunities.