Espai Obert, an alternative service to institutionalization for people with severe psychosocial disabilities.

Espai Obert, an alternative service to institutionalization for people with severe psychosocial disabilities.

Fundació Support-Girona Foundation and Healthcare Assistance Institute (IAS)

Alternative resource to institutionalization for people with severe psychosocial disabilities, which offers them social and health support based on the pact and their free will to use the services of the facility.

It is aimed at people who are in a situation of social exclusion and even homelessness, due to mental and behavioral disorders or substance abuse problems, and who have no family or social support or financial resources,

Espai Obert aims to reduce the stigma of these people and overcome the barriers that stand in the way of their social and community inclusion. The intervention methodology is based on low demand and free use.

As a first phase of intervention, the aim is to cover the basic needs of hygiene and food. Therefore, the service is equipped with a kitchen, living and dining room, washing machines, patio and shower and hygiene areas, and the users participate in the routines of the center (preparing meals, laundry, taking care of the garden…). Once this first phase has been achieved, a bond of trust is built, in order to work on the development, skills and well-being of each person, as well as socialization with other people in the space and other resources in the area.

This pioneering intervention model is one of the tools to be deployed in Catalonia in the process of reconversion and transformation of long-stay psychiatric hospitalization with functional recovery and life project units based on the successful experience of the counties of Girona, where in 2004 the long-stay psychiatric hospital in the former Salt Psychiatric Hospital was closed, generating a network of community mental health and addiction services, with alternative resources.


The Access Hub, a multi-institutional support center for homeless people

The Access Hub, a multi-institutional support center for homeless people

Simon Community

An innovative multi-institutional counseling and support center for homeless people. It is a space designed to ensure that users feel that their well-being is a priority and to make it easier for them to obtain the accompaniment and support they need.

The key to the center is the participation of more than 20 organizations, all of which offer their services under one roof. This removes many bureaucratic barriers that often hinder access to critical services. In addition, the organizations’ partners are in contact and work more efficiently, offering solutions with multiple viewpoints, even in the most difficult circumstances. Users can access more than 40 supports provided by a wide range of experts, from financial and legal support, to digital, health or wellness advice.

Just walking into the building, the user meets a person instead of a reception desk. The goal is to offer a space of connection and tranquility, giving a welcoming and comfortable feeling to ensure a safe and comfortable place. To achieve this feeling, the space has high quality furniture and finishes. Colors are chosen in a way that is not over the top, but with originality and awareness.

The center hopes to break the mold of the usual service delivery by offering a space that is easily accessible, modern and adapted to the needs of the users.

Youth and Family Office, community-based model for raising vulnerable children.

Youth and Family Office, community-based model for raising vulnerable children.

Youth and Familiy Office

Community model of care for vulnerable children and teenagers in the Austrian municipality of Graz, which seeks to strengthen resources for families, and to identify and resolve their specific needs. It is designed so that the child or teenager and the family are at the center, with an approach that takes into account the domestic and social context in which they live.

The initiative has been developed in four districts of the city, and focuses mainly on avoiding the institutionalization of the most vulnerable children. The program’s approach is preventive, offering families who are expecting a child to receive information free of charge and to participate in a wide range of activities to prepare them for future parenting. Some of the activities offered are home visits by professionals, as well as free lectures and courses. Attendance at these courses provides a booklet with stamps that provide an economic incentive exchangeable for other services in the city, such as visits to parental counseling centers.

Once the children are born, parents receive counseling, and if special needs are identified, they can be transitioned to specialized services. The program is also aimed at older ages, including adolescence, with services such as nursery schools or youth centers, as well as leisure activities and digital support.

Graz’s model promotes flexible assistance tailored to the needs of each family, which is always involved in the research and identification of solutions.

Getxo Zurekin, community accompaniment at the end of life

Getxo Zurekin, community accompaniment at the end of life

Fundación doble sonrisa

A local community network that supports and accompanies people who are in a situation of advanced illness, offering a model of health, social and community care to improve their well-being and quality of life that goes beyond the resources and capacity of the health and social services systems.

The network acts in different areas: raising public awareness of the importance of care and support for dependent people or those at the end of life; training neighbors in palliative care; and promoting research to foster a paradigm shift in community care.

The network also provides information on the resources available in the municipality in relation to palliative care and the situation of people with advanced illness, in the form of a local observatory that seeks to detect support needs based on a pioneering collaborative methodology where citizen participation is key.

Getxo Zurekin believes in the strength of the community and in networking among people of the same population to take care of each other, to reach where public services cannot reach.

Hoplr, a neighborhood social network to strengthen mutual support and inclusion

Hoplr, a neighborhood social network to strengthen mutual support and inclusion

Hoplr

Social network aimed at creating social capital among neighbors in a neighborhood. It builds local communities that go hand in hand with current social changes to create fully inclusive and participatory cities.

The initiative aims to put community at the center of neighborhood life, as it considers mutual support to be one of the key elements of neighborhoods. It works free of charge for all types of mobile devices and access is based on each person’s address. To connect neighbors in the same area, neighborhoods are geographically delimited and only profiles from the same neighborhood have access to messages posted within it.

People using the application can meet other people living in the same neighborhood, ask for help to carry out different tasks, or help other neighbors with their needs. In addition, it is a good tool for organizing activities or events such as bike tours or game nights. Hoplr promotes care among the people who participate, whether it is companionship when a person is sick, shopping for elderly people who ask for it, or finding a person to take care of children for a few afternoons during the week.

As for public institutions, they cannot see the conversations between neighbors, but they have the possibility of publishing messages to inform about new developments, with which neighbors can interact and contribute ideas. In other words, it is a social network that promotes direct communication between neighborhood demands and the actions carried out by municipal authorities.

It is a social network free of commercial and advertising intervention, which works respecting the privacy of users, to create a safe environment for communication and citizen participation.

Vila Veïna, a new public community care system

Vila Veïna, a new public community care system

Barcelona City Council

A new public care system in the city of Barcelona that aims to achieve a model of social and health care that is smaller and closer to the users.

To achieve this, it structures the service in a set of “Super Islands” of care, which encompass a group of houses and neighborhoods of between 10,000 and 30,000 inhabitants, with a reference point located in an open community space (for example, a library) to manage the needs of service users in an integrated manner. Thanks to this new innovative service model, professionals enjoy greater autonomy in the organization and management of their work, since they know the users more closely and are able to deal more directly and satisfactorily with all of them.

Each Vila Veïna has the essential services and benefits related to care in a centralized manner, in order to be able to deal with them closely. It also has emotional support groups and a resource bank for the care of children and the elderly, which provides material such as crutches, cradles, wheelchairs and other items necessary for the care of children and the elderly. It also offers legal and employment advice for caregivers and families in need, as well as talks and outdoor activities. The aim is to provide caregivers with access to information about existing services, as well as to create communities of care and proximity.

Each Vila Veïna has a professional who dedicates his or her working day to promoting networking, programming activities and attending to citizens in relation to care. The new profile of this professional is essential in innovation and requires a set of skills for community activation, as well as knowledge of municipal administrative systems and other administrations.

The project is aimed at the entire population living in the territory, because it is based on the idea that ‘we all take care of each other’, and the goal is to achieve a more caring community with all the people who are part of it.

In short, it is an innovative model that humanizes services and contemplates the participation of people, both caregivers and those receiving care, who are part of a community network and co-responsible for the collective welfare.

By 2022 there will be 12 Vila Veïna spaces in the city of Barcelona, and the goal is to have 115 throughout the city in the future.

Social Hotel for drug addicts in a homeless situation

Social Hotel for drug addicts in a homeless situation

ABD (Welfare and Development Association)

Hotel Social per a persones drogodependents en situació de sensellarisme

Daniela and Paola, two residents of the Social Hotel

A low-demand temporary residential center for drug addicts who spend the night on the street. It is a pioneering and unique residential resource in Spain, which offers accommodation and coverage of basic needs, as well as a space for professional accompaniment to enable supervised substance use.

It is estimated that 30% of homeless people in the city of Barcelona are drug addicts, a fact that prevents them from accessing the network of shelters and municipal housing for the homeless. In addition, living on the street implies a state of enormous uncertainty and precariousness that hinders any voluntary process of abandoning substance use. Therefore, these people find themselves inside a wheel from which it is very difficult to get out. That is why the ABD Social Hotel does not require abstinence from addictions to enter the center, but offers individualized monitoring of each drug-dependent person without imposing any commitment or specific starting point.

The Social Hotel, which at the beginning of 2022 ABD has been moved to a hotel located in the Horta-Guinardó neighborhood of Barcelona that had been closed due to the drop in tourism caused by Covid-19, has a capacity for 50 people and has single rooms, a dining room and multipurpose rooms, among which there is a room open for those residents who need to consume. In the room there are nurses, psychologists and sometimes a doctor, as well as the necessary material to do so with maximum hygienic guarantees. It is, therefore, an environment in which professionals and users establish relationships of trust that facilitate recovery and personalized follow-up.

Another of the innovative aspects of this new Social Hotel in comparison with other resources is that the shelter works with a gender perspective, since 50% of the places are reserved for women and it has non-mixed spaces and groups to work on gender violence. It also has spaces for people with reduced mobility and places for victims of gender violence.

In short, it is a project that works for the social inclusion of people who are doubly socially excluded: homeless and drug addicts.

The Social Hotel opened during the pandemic, in 2020, in a provisional facility, and since 2022 it has a permanent building in a former hotel. After a year and a half in operation and with 200 residents already having passed through, the professionals of the Social Hotel have been able to note a substantial improvement in the emotional state and health of the residents, some of whom have made a satisfactory transition to other, more autonomous accommodations.

ADB Associació Benestar i Desenvolupament

Emantik, a service for the detection and care of child and adolescent discomfort

Emantik, a service for the detection and care of child and adolescent discomfort

Andoain Town Hall

Programme for the early detection and care of situations of vulnerability, discomfort or violence towards children and adolescents.

Emantik is based on an application (Kanjo) that systematically records the emotional state of the pupils of the three schools that have implemented the programme (Aita Larramendi Ikastola, La Salle-Berrozpe Ikastetxea and Ondarreta Ikastetxea) through a tablet and an algorithm that subsequently analyses the emotional patterns in order to detect cases of risk early on. The main function and objective of the programme is to help children and adolescents to learn emotional management, as well as to prevent cases of risk and vulnerability, or a possible situation of violence or suffering of the child or adolescent.

It is a system whereby three times a day (when arriving to school, after playground time and at the end of the school day) children and adolescents have to indicate in the tablet the emotion that best reflects their mood from among calm, contentment, anger, fear, disgust and sadness. In this way, boys and girls learn to identify their emotions, and on the other hand, the analysis of the data makes it possible to detect their emotional states as well as their evolution, in order to prevent situations of isolation, bullying, or other types of situations of discomfort or vulnerability.

The Kanjo system does not have access to the personal data of the boys and girls at any stage of the process, and only the schools have the capacity to link the anonymised IDs of the algorithm with the data of their pupils.

Emantik

P.I.P.P.I., intensive care programme for vulnerable families with young children

P.I.P.P.I., intensive care programme for vulnerable families with young children

Laboratory for Research and Intervention in Family Education of the University of Padova, Italian Ministry of Labour and Social Policies

Girls playing.

Intensive and multidisciplinary intervention programme in vulnerable families to reduce the risk of children being removed from their nuclear family, articulating a set of combined actions in relation to children’s needs: intensive home care, group activities with other parents, accompaniment by volunteer families, and joint work with teachers and social workers from schools and social services.

In line with the aim of the Convention on the Rights of the Child to develop measures to ensure the best interests of the child, the Italian Ministry of Social Welfare, in partnership with the University of Padua, designed and implemented from 2011 this intensive care programme for vulnerable families called the Intervention Programme for the Prevention of Institutionalization. Its abbreviation, P.I.P.P.P.I. is at the same time inspired by the fictional character Pippi Långstrump, a creative and surprisingly resilient girl known all over the world.

As its name suggests, P.I.P.P.P.I. aims to prevent out-of-home care and respond to problems related to child neglect, taking into account the right of all children to quality care. When parental neglect is involved, and there is a subsequent removal of the child, the removal itself expropriates the competence of the parents. This practice does not seem to be the most desirable intervention, so P.I.P.P.Y. experiences a social response that attempts to put the developmental needs of children first.

P.I.P.P.P.Y. represents a co-ordinated and co-operative work between different institutions, professions and disciplines of social services, psychology and pedagogy to act together in order to achieve a reduction in the number of children removed from their families. At the same time, P.I.P.P.P.I. has developed its own tool for the assessment and evaluation of cases based on models from Scotland and Quebec.

P.I.P.P.P.Y. is now widespread throughout Italy, and several academic studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of this intervention model. The evaluation report of the seventh edition of the programme 2018-2020 provides evidence of the bonus results achieved.

Centro Nazionale di documentazione e analisi per l'infanzia e l'adolescenza

Reconnect, a professional app to ensure the continuity of social insertion pathways

Reconnect, a professional app to ensure the continuity of social insertion pathways

Groupe SOS

Image from Reconnect webpage.

Work app for social professionals, which gives them all the information they need to support users: check their history, update their status, record meeting reports, schedule reminders for upcoming events, find documents and contacts useful, etc. It also allows you to inform team members of the situation of a person being cared for. And, in the event of a job replacement, the new professional can quickly get an overview of the ongoing procedures and the next steps to take in relation to each of the users.

In addition, it allows you to follow in real time the number of places available in services, accommodation and activities, and find the people who need them; and automatically analyze data statistics related to the people being cared for and assessing the impact of social intervention.

The ergonomics of the application have been specially worked with social professionals and third sector entities so that the management is very simple and allows the professionals to concentrate on accompanying the people being cared for. Co-design with third sector entities also allows you to provide solutions tailored to the specifics of the sector’s programs and services. And, in addition, the configuration of the system allows to satisfy the specific operational needs of each social entity.

Reconnect