Deutsche Konversation

Inclusion creates prospects


Social inequality is growing worse around the world and in Switzerland. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated this trend. Not only must underprivileged people grapple with financial woes, they are often also stigmatised and socially marginalised.

Through some 60 projects in 14 cantons, HEKS/EPER endeavours to ensure that everyone in Switzerland can share in the country's social, cultural, political and economic life on an equitable basis. HEKS/EPER projects help socially disadvantaged people in difficult life circumstances to live independently, minimise their social risks and protect themselves from unequal treatment and discrimination. In so doing, HEKS/EPER focuses on the topics of job market integration, the structuring of daily routines and encounters, assisted living, language, intercultural interpreting and intermediation, child and parent education, and as well as age and migration.

HEKS/EPER also assists disadvantaged communities abroad in claiming their rights through dialogue with the State or the business sector. These encompass, for example, their inclusion in the society and economy, a say in politics, or access to education, especially for girls and women, the landless, those affected by conflicts, or minorities. HEKS/EPER thus promotes inclusion for the Roma minority in south-eastern Europe, or works in Bangladesh to ensure that marginalised communities such as Dalits and Adivasis are accorded the same rights as the majority population. Sustainable development is possible only if everyone helps shape it and is able to benefit from it.

Examples of projects

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