“ErgAxia” is a Promotion into Employment Service for individuals with developmental intellectual disorders and autism spectrum disorders. It has been operating since 1997 and has placed 190 individuals into the open labor market up until today.

The service was established in order to respond to the fundamental right of every person to employment and to eliminate the vocational exclusion of people with disabilities from the labor market.

The vocational rehabilitation model applied in recent years, with evidently successful results, is Supported Employment which is defined as: “The provision of support to people with disabilities or to other vulnerable groups with the goal of ensuring and maintaining paid employment in the open market.”

Supported Employment (S.E.) is based on the person-centered approach, which adapts to meet the needs of each individual, and is completely consistent with the concepts of taking responsibility, social inclusion, dignity and respect for individuals. According to international statistics, S.E. is an effective means of intervention in order for people with disabilities not only to find a job but also to keep it in the long term. This specialized intervention accomplishes integrating the individual into the workplace as well as adapting the workplace environment to the individual.

It has been acknowledged and agreed upon as the European model of best practice by the European Union of Supported Employment (2005). For the implementation of this specific model, ErgAxia uses the Toolkit, which was created within the context of the Leonardo Program “EUSE SUPPORTED EMPLOYMENT TOOLKIT” and in which the methodology and procedure that must be followed are clearly described and defined.

ErgAxia participated as a partner in this Leonardo program and contributed successfully in the creation of the Toolkit. The service’s most recent cooperation in a Leonardo program was in the creation of the “Toolkit for Diversity”.

In conclusion, ErgAxia’s purpose is to place, train and support young adults in the workplace so that they can find and keep the work position they desire.