The Uruguayan Ministry of Social Development (MIDES) undertook a technical visit to learn about the experiences of France, Finland and the European Commission in working with homeless adults in order to identify lessons learnt about innovative working methods.
Reunión del Programa de Atención a Personas que viven en situación de calle de Uruguay.Meeting of the Uruguayan Programme for Assistance to Homeless Persons
The Assistance for Homeless People Programme (PASC) of the Uruguayan Ministry of Social Development (MIDES) uses a wide range of actions, but it is confronting a weakness in terms of its intervention methodology. Currently the PASCO is revising the design of the programme in terms of attention to the diverse social problems that converge in homelessness.
In the framework of EUROsociAL II, the programme for social cohesion in Latin America financed by the European Commission and led by the FIIAPP, a series of preliminary investigations were carried out in England and Romania (December, 2013) and Mexico (March, 2014) which studied interventions involving homeless boys and girls, adolescents and their families. Important lessons were drawn from the experience which will be used as inputs for this revision and for generating an intervention methodology.
This latter activity was organized by CIPPEC and ADECRI in scope of the Social Policies area of EUROsociAL II, coordinated by the IILA, to complement the previous visits and go into greater depth in learning about specific methodologies for working with homeless adults, which is a major problem in Uruguay.
On this occasion, the Uruguayan civil servants completed a fact-finding mission regarding the experiences of France, Finland and the European Commission to explore more deeply the work these countries are doing with the adult homeless population. Between 8th and 19th June, they visited different public bodies and civil organizations that work with homeless adults in Paris, Marseille, Helsinki and Brussels.
The experience allowed them to learn new ways of working in this area which address the work done by the PASCO in Uruguay and enable the government to open new debates in terms of the methodologies for approaching this problem. To do this, it was essential to have a delegation that brought together technical specialists and political leaders at a moment when the new Assistance System Coordination Department is being consolidated.
The visits strengthened their conviction about the need to undertake a restructuring of the Programme for Assistance to Homeless People and enabled the Department to understand the key elements for reforming the working methodology and creating a more extensive strategic policy. The next step will be discussion of the key elements in a technical working meeting, where the lines and modalities for revision of this programme will be defined.