Europe currently counts 504 millions citizens, 80 millions of whom - more than 15% – have a disability and need care and support in their every day lives. With the population progressively aging, this number is expected to increase. In fact, in 2060, it is expected that citizens over 65 years of age will represent 30% of the total European population (2009 Communication on an aging population, EC).
One of the challenges of the 21st century will therefore be to meet the growing demand for medical assistance and care in ways that are sustainable for national health and welfare systems of Member Countries. In this scenario, active citizenship and volunteering can play a fundamental role.
The project "ACT! Acting for Dependent People" aims to promote and strengthen cooperation among family carers, volunteers and professionals who work with dependent persons in the context of their home, through the development, piloting and transfer of training and support measures among the international partnership.
The foreseen outputs of the project are:
Carry out a comparative benchmark analysis of existing initiatives and tools in the field of training and/or support services towards citizens who wish to volunteer within the territory of reference of each partner;
On the basis of such analysis, develop training modules and support actions aiming to create new skills and/or to facilitate the recognition of existing skills (know-how and abilities that will be formalized in a learning and awareness-raising toolkit produced by the partners);
Capitalize on and disseminate project results, with a view to mainstreaming them into local policy as well as to replicating implementation by organizations and entities beyond the project's partnership and territory of reference.
By the end of the project we expect the following outcomes:
• Formal and informal carers are led to rethink the framework of home-care interventions with a view to better integrate and complement one another;
• Skills employed by each actor – relating to both the care relation and their ability to coordinate the intervention - are valued and fostered;
• New tools and modes of operation are designed and tested, while existing good practices are disseminated beyond project’s direct beneficiaries.
“ACT!” is the youngest generation of a family of projects and activities, built upon and carried forward by project partners within their specific field of expertise and concerning issues related to care and assistance, skills, dependence and ageing. The composition of this partnership therefore responds to a strategic view towards continuity, complementarity and capitalisation of the results already achieved along each project line.