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Ethical Hotel

The journey to self-sufficiency begins with hospitality
We value the special skills offered by youths with Down’s syndrome by supporting a new model for truly inclusive tourism.

The results

  • Young beneficiaries involved
  • Partnerships created
  • Job placements commenced*
  • Loyal customers*
Liguria
2018
2021
Liguria

* This project was selected in the 2018 call, still on going. Results expected in 2021.
In collaboration with: Cooperativa Sociale Download Onlus

THE CHALLENGE: intellectual disability and social discrimination

A key aspect in the growth of each person is employment, which is not just a right for all, but is also considered one of the main values of an individual.
A value that underscores just how impossible it is to achieve true social integration and self-sufficiency without employment.
However, this milestone is more challenging for people with intellectual disabilities who are almost exclusively able to find employment opportunities in sheltered workshops.
Although there is no shortage of examples demonstrating how such individuals can be a precious resource, the bias that disability equals lessened productivity remains strong.
Thus, it is important to create job opportunities that, through an attentive process of skill training and self-sufficiency, can become exemplar in promoting resources of value to society and professional skills applicable to the free job market.

THE GOAL: to promote self-sufficiency in the disabled through inclusion, employment and hospitality

By employing disabled youths in hospitality, Ethical Hotel aims to break down the barriers that for various reasons such as a sense of inadequacy, fear of not being able to manage the work relationship and ignorance, might prevent inclusivity.
Specifically, the project aims to provide skills-training in the hospitality and agricultural industry for youths with Down syndrome, with a focus on self-sufficiency.
This tangible goal rests on a plan to create a new Ethical Hotel in the Cinque Terre, set up with the same management practices of a high-end farm.

OUR PROJECT: a special hotel to learn how to be inclusive and turn challenges into opportunities

Ethical Hotel was conceived intuitively, by seeing hospitality as a key industry in which to develop people with intellectual disabilities’ untapped talent, to facilitate their employment. A project that in terms of its operation and focus resembles that of The Miracle Shop.
With its reception, the dining room, the bar, the kitchen, the bedrooms, the hotel structure recalls a home, a place where the trainees feel most comfortable due to the familiarity; while working in direct contact with the clientele, they effectively develop their communication skills with strangers.
Through a 3-year professional job training programme, the 20 youths will be employed in two distinct commercial scenarios: a hotel with a bistro in Monterosso (renovated by the Foundation), and a farm for which we are finalising the governance, with a high-end supply chain ranging from honey to saffron.
It is a wide-ranging project, established in 2006 in Asti, which garnered international attention and became a model of social and employment inclusivity for intellectually disabled youths.
A success that in recent years led to duplicating the Ethical Hotel format in different parts of the world such as Argentina, the United States, Norway, Spain, Australia, Slovakia and, in Italy, now also in Rome.

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