Publicly funded jobs at grocery market opens up new opportunities for long-term unemployed as well as the whole neighbourhood.
Going back to work every day after six years of unemployment and looking forward to fresh career opportunities – the state government programme, ‘Publicly funded employment’ has managed to help people achieve precisely that. Seven people who had been out of a job for a long time have found new work at the Hessler Grocery Market in Gelsenkirchen which is operated by GAFÖG GmbH.
They will now be supporting the market’s permanent cadre for two years. The scheme gives new impetus to the local area as well. Residents – many of them older than 60 – again have a grocery store within walking distance.
Candidates for the programme are shortlisted in cooperation with the local Jobcentre. There is an assessment procedure where skills and suitability are tested. The formerly long-term unemployed work a shift rota, Monday to Saturday 7am to 7pm. Their work includes shelf-stacking, checking best-before and sell-by dates and operating checkout scanners.
Upskilling is an important part, too, with a view to eventual re-integration into the regular labour market. Qualification modules include hygiene regulations and customer services but also administrative activities such as turnover calculation and stocktaking
In NRW, regular jobs are supported through the ESF-funded programme, ‘Publicly funded employment’ (ÖgB). Along with a range of additional measures, the scheme facilitates the long-term or even permanent return of the most vulnerable to the regular jobs market. The programme is co-funded by the Federal Employment Service’s NRW Field Office.