Fundación Secretariado Gitano, Spain

Nominated for implementation of the Acceder Programme aimed at social inclusion through labour inclusion and helping the Roma to access the labour market.

The Fundación Secretariado Gitano (FSG) is a Spanish non-profit intercultural organization working for Roma inclusion and non-discrimination for over 30 years, both in Spain and in Europe. Fundación provides services for the Roma community in key areas for social change, where disadvantages persist: employment, education, housing, health and equal treatment. FSG team is composed of over 600 workers (both Roma and non-Roma) and 600 volunteers in 50 cities across Spain.

Many Roma find themselves excluded from the labour market, owing not only to a lack of initial qualifications and employment role models, but also to the rejection and discrimination Roma ethnicity. The Acceder programme aims to promote the inclusion of Roma as employees in the labour market. It is a national programme that has achieved great results during the last 15 years of implementation with support of the European Social Fund (ESF), as part of the Operational Programme (OP) Fight Against Discrimination (2000-2006, 2007-2013) and OP Social Inclusion and Social Economy (2014-2019). It has been a pioneer programme as the first ESF OP with actions specifically targeted to Roma and managed by an NGO.

The Acceder Programme has represented an innovative step towards the labour inclusion of the Roma by developing a solid methodology focusing on salaried employment as the key for social change. A national programme based on increasing the employability and employment opportunities of Roma by applying an individualized and intercultural approach and creating a strong private-public partnership alliance of companies, public administrations and the non-profit sector. Although it is a targeted programme, it seeks to reinforce the autonomy of Roma, avoiding segregation. The results have been excellent (15 years of the program -2000-2015-): 87,889 participants (67%, being Roma; 53%, women; 39%, under 30 years); 23,918 have gained access to a job; 62,334 employment contracts; 27,059 people trained in 3,340 courses; 20,924 collaborating companies; 100 public administrative bodies involved (national, regional and local level).