[Disability Policy] Quanteam Hangagé: The European Disability Week 2018
December, 6th 2018
Since 2014, Quanteam Group has been committed to the employment of people with disabilities in order to promote equal opportunity and diversity. Once again this year, we remained faithful to our convictions and our commitment with actions during the European Week for the Employment of People with Disabilities (SEEPH) from 19th to 25th of November 2018.
Because we are all concerned, and we can all be affected by disabilities, it is our civic responsibility to be mobilized around this reality.
On this occasion, the Quanteam Human Resources team organized various actions to explain that our differences can be a strength synonymous with performance. Back on this Quanteam Hangagé week!
“Quanteam has been working for several years to drop the masks on the prejudices related to disability and allow its employees to talk about it simply and freely. Why? Because disability affects us all: one employee out of two will face a disability situation during their professional career and at the same time 80% of known and recognized disabilities are said to be “invisible”. For example, a person with asthma is a person with a disability, as well as someone with dyslexia or diabetes… Being able to talk about is important because today disability is no longer incompatible with business world. and the work. Having disabled worker recognition gives you access to special rights such as workstation accommodations or special adaptations and it is our duty to let you know. Expressing yourself with discretion and respect to confidentiality is therefore essential. For this reason, we are available to our employees, at any time, to implement the appropriate steps. Participating and committing to the European Disability Week allows us to remind our employees that we are available for them and we want to raise awareness with fun activities organized throughout the week.”
Sarah Bourenane, Human Resources Director.
Quanteam program for the European Disability Week
Quizzes on the theme of disability to introduce the week
From November 12th to 16th, a series of quizzes and small games were broadcast each day to Quanteam employees in order to enable them to discover or rediscover the basic knowledge about disability. This allowed them to better appreciate the activities organized during the official week.
Massages with partially sighted professional masseur
On Monday 19th and Thursday 22nd of November, Quanteam employees were massaged for fifteen minutes by blind and partially sighted professionals. True moment of relaxation, it allowed both employees to experience the work of these professionals whose disability was forgotten after a few minutes and to be “boosted” for the rest of the day! This activity is also directly part of our “well-being at work” policy
Blind tastings organized by HR teams
In addition to being massaged, employees participated on Monday and Thursday to a blind tasting animation. Organized by our HR teams, the principle was rather simple: the blindfolded collaborators had to guess what they tasted in a limited time. It may seem simple but still many did not recognize what they were eating. A great initiative to raise employees’ awareness about Disability!
“This situational exercise is surprising! It gives us the opportunity to see how our relationship to taste is altered when we are deprived of the sight sense!“, Sarah Bourenane, Human Resources Director
A dinner in the dark to live a unique sensory experience
On Tuesday, November 20th, Quanteam employees had a unique experience on the occasion of the European Disability Week: a dinner in the dark. Plunged into a room totally obstructed by light, they had to adapt themselves to their environment by being deprived of the sight. They enjoyed a 3-course meal consisting of an appetizer, a main course and a dessert. They didn’t know in advance what they would eat. More than half of the ingredients were recognized and the experience was appreciated by everyone although they lived it differently! Discover the testimonials below recovered just after the dinner.
“I found this experience destabilizing at the beginning because we do not know where the objects are (cutlery, glass, bottle, bread) but also because the communications are disturbed (loss of visual contact with the interlocutor). We do not know if the person we are talking to is listening and if it is our turn to talk to. However, I quickly got used to eating in the dark while I thought it would have been harder to. I didn’t had to use my hands to eat or to check if the plate was empty!”
Anne, Recruitment Officer
“At first it was weird, I was very sore eyes, I could not keep them open and I could not trust people guiding us. They told us “you have to go straight,” but I was expecting stairs every time. Otherwise, we managed to recognize most of the ingredients we ate. It was a very beautiful experience! However I’m happy to get back to the sighted world and regained some control.”
“It really was not bad at all and it highlighted two things: first as soon as we are in the dark we are completely lost and we focus much more on taste and touch. We are lost very quickly to find our cutlery, do not lose them, be sure not to overturn something… and for the taste it goes quickly in blind-test to guess what we eat. Everyone had different opinions, it was pretty funny! Secondly we completely forget the voice and the hearing and we realize even more that we all speak ultra loud. This is because we do not realize distances with people. So really, it was a very interesting experience and I recommend everyone to have dinner in the dark!
“An honestly very interesting experience! The fact of not seeing anything allows us to rediscover food and sometimes we have good surprises. Sometimes we also do not recognize what we eat. It’s really a nice experience and it helps to realize that the environment we see around us takes a lot of space.”
“A real experience, a real discovery. Not destabilizing at all finally. We were warned while entering the room that some of us could be very destabilized by the black and that in this case we could go out directly, it was not my case. I felt everything in a very calm, very soothing way. Instead of raising my voice to make myself heard, I spent my dinner talking to the people closest to me. I talked with people next to me and in front in a very calm way and with a much softer tone than usual. So I thought it was a very soothing experience. In terms of flavors I found it very surprising, but we still recognize the main lines! This experience allowed me to speak more sincerely and to get to know the three people around me better. So it was a great experience, thank you!”
Catherine, General Services Officer and Quanteam Headquarters Reception
“Thank you to the entire HR department for this great initiative and to all the contributors. It is an rich experience to be in total darkness. At first, all our senses and landmarks are upset. We must find new benchmarks, new ways of interacting with our environment and gradually adapt yourself. I was impressed by the teams who provided the service and who were very comfortable as if it was broad daylight. This shows one important thing: being disabled does not make it less productive. It is an awareness that must accompany us on a daily basis and I am proud to be a member of a company that works for this awakening.“
Being recognized as a disabled worker is a long journey, built on important personal decisions. The entire Quanteam HR Team is available for Quanteam employees and supports them as much as possible. Mindsets are changing little by little with this type of campaign and activities we put in place every year. So it encourages us to keep on being committed to this aspect!