Ohel Sarah is a staunch advocate for the rights of people with disabilities and for their
inclusion in the workforce. The Matanel Inclusive Workplace Award was initiated to create
awareness of the rights of people with disabilities to lead independent, meaningful lives,
promote their integration into society and encourage employers to employ people with
disabilities in their businesses.
Unfortunately, there are strong misconceptions about employing people with special needs.
Despite various laws created to advance the integration process of people with disabilities into
the workforce, only 53% are actually employed. Many employers do not accept people with
disabilities into their enterprise, and even more do not actively seek their employment.
With the award, Ohel Sarah sought to achieve the following:
• Create more awareness of the right of people with disabilities to benefit from employment
• Further advance the full integration into society of people with disabilities
• Encourage more employers to offer people with disabilities a fair chance in their
enterprises by celebrating the ones who do
The award process began with advertising the award and inviting businesses to nominate
themselves, or employees to nominate their employers. The deadline of applying was May 18th.
Thereafter, a committee was set up to establish criteria for the selection of nominees. The committee was comprised by representatives from Ohel Sarah, the Shekel organization and the Commission for Equal Rights for Persons with Disabilities.
The grading system was based on the following parameters:
• the percentage of employees with disabilities in the enterprise
• the size of the enterprise
• the exposure to and integration of the special-needs
worker within the customer base
• the integration level of the special-needs worke
in the social activities of the enterprise
• the number of years offering employment
to special needs individuals
• whether the work is permanent or temporary
• equal pay, work conditions and benefits
• exceptional efforts to employ people with disabilities,
with factors such as geographic distance or convenience notwithstanding
The Inclusive Workplace Award ceremony took place on June 20th at the Tel Aviv Stock
Exchange. It was attended by First Lady Mrs. Michal Hertzog, Deputy Minister of Agriculture Mr.Moshe Butbul, Deputy Minister of Finance Mrs. Michal Waldiger, former MK Mrs. Shirley Pinto,representatives from the Commission for Equal Rights for Persons with Disabilities, Matanel representative in Israel attn. Mr. Ohad Bouganim, Director of the Shekel organization Mrs. Clara Feldman, Shalem Fund Director Mrs. Riva Muscal and other dignitaries. Mr. Oren Helman, CEO of the Sikui Shaveh organization that promotes employment of people with disabilities, served as Master of Ceremony.
The award was granted to three enterprises among over 100 that had applied.
The first prize of 30,000 NIS went to Concept Pharmacies in Kfar Saba, which has been employing a large percentage of people with various disabilities in several departments for over a decade. The company makes sure to adjust each position to the ability of the employee and help him or her feel like an integral part of the staff.
The second prize of 15,000 NIS went to the Golbary Sacara women’s beauty and clothing store in Bnei Brak, where several women with cognitive disabilities work in customer
service, organizing and stocking. The staff has been exceptionally welcoming, as have the customers.
The third prize of 15,000 NIS went to the Stop Market supermarket in Natanya. The supermarket employs over a dozen people with physical, cognitive and mental disabilities
from the Arab sector, and provides them with equal salaries and job benefits.