GIOF Annual Meeting • May 19–26, 2022
The Largest Annual Meeting of
 the Global DEI Community

Employability as a key to refugee inclusion. How to design and implement a long-lasting and impactful program.

May 19, 2022 11:00 AM CET BUY TICKETS

We are all in the very epicenter of the biggest refugee crises of modern times. Russia's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine and ongoing war forced more than 5.1 million to leave their homes for neighboring countries. Refugees in the past and also now have few real prospects for the future, with little or no work or structure in their lives.

Employment is essential for long-term and successful integration in a host country. It needs to take place here and now, not just when conditions are ideal i.e. when refugees have learned the local language, or when the population is united on the need for integration. In the end, it’s very simple; with better integration comes fewer tensions in society. Although work is key, some employers don’t want or don’t know how to arrange it and refugees often lack the necessary skills to be employed in a new country. That’s where a successful employability program can be a game-changer for refugee inclusion.

IKEA is the first company in Poland, which designed and successfully implemented the employability program for refugees from five different countries. It took us two years to research, plan and design the program that brings meaningful change to the refugee community and the organization.

Our know-how might now serve as inspiration and guidance to the companies that aim at genuine impact through refugee inclusion.

Susanna Romantsova Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Leader at IKEA Retail Poland