The Social Economy Enterprise R.U.S.Z started 1998 with disassembling old household appliances, such as washing machines and dishwashers from Vienna’s waste collection centres. The Association quickly turned into the first address for repair services of different kinds of electrical and electronic equipment in Vienna. During the first 10 years Repair and Service Centre R.U.S.Z transferred 300 former long-term unemployed and disabled into regular jobs and stabilized another 400 people at risk. It prevented 10.000 tons of Waste from electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) focusing at the extension of the utilisation phase of household appliances, consumer electronics and IT. R.U.S.Z also offers second hand appliances, a handyman service and energy consulting for poor households at reasonable prices.
The broad aim of the strategy is to support the victims of state and market failure. The convincing idea of implementing a third sector economy – besides the market economy and the state (public administration) – would help the unemployed and the poor likewise: former unemployed produce products and services for those, who cannot afford to fulfil their legitimate needs at commercial market prices.