At a Glance

Szekszárd, Hungary

Impact Area:
Labor Inclusion

People Supported:
People with Disabilities, Rural

Joined NESsT Portfolio:


Approximately 8-10% of the people in Hungary have intellectual or physical disabilities, and only 14% of them have jobs. The lack of meaningful work opportunities results in isolation, low income, lack of access to basic services and overall low quality of life.

In 2007 Kék Madár Alapítvány opened a restaurant called Ízlelő that provides employment for people with disabilities. Currently, 90% of its staff has intellectual or physical disabilities. The restaurant also offers vocational education for people with disabilities, giving them the skills they need to secure jobs in other restaurants or catering businesses. The restaurant recently expanded its seating capacity and is planning to replicate its model in two other locations in the next three years.


Results & Impact 


disabled people have been trained for catering professions


life-changing, dignified jobs for disabled people


family members whose lives have been positively impacted

The enterprise development support provided by NESsT was key in the planning and launch phases when we were figuring out the business concepts with the highest possible potential.
— Andrea Mészáros, Executive Director, Kék Madár Alapítvány

NESsT Investment

Kék Madár joined the NESsT portfolio in 2007 and is one of NESsT's long-term investments. NESsT has supported Kék Madár from its social enterprise's earliest start-up days through its current plans to scale the business.

NESsT invested start-up capital via a grant in Kék Madár to help it launch Ízlelő, housing it in a portion of the foundation's office building. Three years later, the restaurant was a success, and the Kék Madár team looked to expand it to serve more customers and employ a greater number of people with disabilities. NESsT provided Kék Madár with a low-interest loan to purchase a new facility for its office, allowing Ízlelő to expand, renovate and relaunch in the original building. 

The NESsT portfolio team in Hungary has also supported Kék Madár in developing key systems for managing performance, finances and client satisfaction over the years. More recently, NESsT leveraged its mentor network to provide pro bono legal counsel for developing a replication model to allow for future growth in new locations.

Kék Madár plans to triple the social impact of its restaurant within three years by opening in two new locations, establishing a visitor center and expanding its food workshops. Through this expansion, Kék Madár also seeks to prove the replicability of the model and generate 20% of the foundation's total revenues from the restaurant business.