EU support for the creation of a normative framework for the home assistance service in the Ćićevac municipality

Within the project “Home care service in Ćićevac for those who need it most”, implemented by the Ćićevac Municipality in partnership with the NGO “Eurocontact”, enabled creation of a normative framework for home care service in the Ćićevac municipality. This project was supported by the European Union with EUR 168,976.96, while project implementers managed to obtain another EUR 19,450.66 through co-financing.

The project in Ćićevac was aimed at creating an adequate normative framework, and providing innovative social services through a home for the elderly and disabled. Within the project, the Social Protection Strategy for the period 2019-2024 was developed, which established a framework for providing social protection services on the territory of the municipality. Also, 28 home care hostesses were trained according to the accredited program, and a licensed home care service provider was selected. A survey was conducted on the entire territory of the municipality of Ćićevac among potential beneficiaries (102 respondents), while 52 users were included in the provision of services. As part of the project activities, a satisfaction survey was conducted, and an evaluation of the implemented project activities was carried out.

As part of the survey of users satisfaction with social services, the vast majority (43 persons, or 90% of them surveyed) said that they were completely satisfied with the service they received. More than half of respondents, 53% of them, feel more capable of independent living now than it did before the start of the service, while a total of 10 respondents stated that during the service they developed skills to independently perform some of the activities, which shows us the inclusive value of the service. The skills they specify relate to easier home affairs, home-based movement and drug use. All users replied that they would like to continue to use the service, which speaks of its importance and the need for further continuation on the territory of the municipality of Ćićevac.

It is necessary to maintain the same level of service quality after the project is completed. The majority of users will have a lifelong need for support through local social services – as many as two thirds of users (35 people) have used the home help service for years. The problem of user participation in the price of the service will be present in the future.

If the project started from the beginning, the project team would focus more energy this time on more intensive work on raising the professional capacities of the employees in the municipal administration, raising the financial capacities of the local community for the sustainability of the necessary social protection services, and raising the awareness of the users on the necessity of participation in pricing service.

The project is implemented under the grant scheme “Development of efficient services in community areas of education and social welfare at the local level”. This grant scheme with a budget of 5.5 million euros, finances project activities for 30 beneficiaries and covers local self-government, civil society organizations, and relevant institutions at the local level aimed for the promotion of social entrepreneurship and for preventing the dropout children from the school system in Serbia. The project also aims to increase the capacities of the Ministry of Labor, Employment, Veterans and Social Affairs in the management of the grant scheme, as well as to guide and modernize the process of drafting the Strategy for Social Welfare and other innovative regulatory mechanisms in the field of social policy.