Evaluation of development and implementation of a concept for building a service-center which is managed by volunteers to improve participation of visually impaired persons in workings life

The aim of the project is to establish a service center for jobseekers with visual impairments, abbreviated ISCAS, which is mainly managed by volunteers. The service center is supported and advised by employees of the vocational promotion center Düren gGmbH. At the beginning, the support means an acquisition of volunteers. After that, all volunteers receive a special training. General purpose of the training is to gain knowledge about visually impaired persons and their possibilities to return to work as well as about the design of the infrastructure. Background of the project is a statutory regulation which led to a consulting gap. Integration services are not longer allowed to take care of all job applicants.

The early development of a service center specialized at visually impaired people avoids the loss of competencies and networks, which are currently provided by integration services. Additionally, the direct spatial connection to BFW Düren and the support of qualified employees of the vocational promotion center ensures high quality of the service. In case of need the experts of the center can be contacted.

Core task of the service center will be the support of visually impaired persons’ efforts to become vocational reintegrated. RWTH Aachen evaluates the implementation and practical realization of ISCAS by controlling structure-, process-, and result quality. For controlling structure quality, personal, infrastructural and organizational frameworks will be evaluated. These are for instance group size, training materials and availability of technical aids.

For controlling process quality the practical implementation of the training concept will be considered. The number and contents of training elements, the acquisition of volunteers and the integration of the training concept in everyday working practice will be evaluated. For controlling result quality the achieved effects of the project will be considered to ensure sustainability. The number of trained volunteers, the return to work of visually impaired participants and the satisfaction of all project members will be investigated.

The process oriented evaluation allows a continuous adaptation of the project implementation.