Due to the increasingly ageing population of Ljubljana and due to the lengthening life expectancy as well as the older people staying healthy and active for longer, we started methodologically following the idea of keeping older people at home and in their local environments for longer by offering services for the older people outside of retirement homes which makes them more interesting and inviting for a wider circle of the older people.
We finance a number of various programmes for the older people in the areas of social care, health, education, culture and sports through public tenders. These programmes are provided by NGOs and public institutes, while many activities focusing on the older people also take place within city quarter communities of the Municipality of Ljubljana.
In the field of social care and heath protection, these programmes in last few years include the following: DACs (9), programmes for the promotion of inter-generational cooperation, programmes aimed at preventing the older people from falling, programmes for senior citizens with Parkinson’s disease, the Seniors for Seniors Project, self-help support groups, counselling in the fields of social, health and legal assistance, provision of information on sporting and cultural activities, educational opportunities and volunteer work in the area of Ljubljana, programmes for people with dementia and their relatives, etc.
DCAs have proven to be increasingly more important and needed, and we are receiving positive feedback from the general lay and expert public, both at home and abroad. The programmes they provide are highly varied with the possibility of having daily social contacts. The first DAC in Ljubljana opened in 2005, with 8, geographically evenly spread out around Ljubljana, following up until now. We are also planning to broaden the DAC network even further in the future. DCAs also give special attention to inclusion of volunteers in all forms of work. In some DCAs more than 90 percent of the teaching personal are older people themselves with appropriate knowledge and experiences. One of these is also intended for people with hearing loss, hearing impairments and dual sensory impairment, and enables users’ more independent lives, reduce their isolation, connect them to one another and give them a sense of greater inclusion.
Each one of the DACs is visited by 30 to 100 people per day (all of the DACs have up to 2000 members per year) and hosts 30 – 35 activities per week which are adapted to the needs and wants of the users. Most of DACs are open from the morning until late afternoon and one of them is devoted especially to hearing challenged and deaf. Among various activities that are offered by our DACs are board games, cooking lessons, foreign languages lessons, choir singing, different forms of physical exercise, yoga, dancing, computer classes, photography classes, art history, book debates, trips, visiting cultural events,… All of our DACs have full capacities and we expect to open more in the near future. The various activities and programmes offered by Ljubljana DACs are coordinated by volunteers and are free of charge or demand only a symbolic contribution from the participants.
The network of DACs in the City of Ljubljana is one of our examples of good practice in the field of social care for the older people. We are proud that this program is a very useful also recognized in other Slovenian municipalities and based on our good experience the practice began to spread to other cities.
Main target group: Older people in general
Other target group(s): volunteers
Sector(s): Social protection
Other sector(s): education
Desired outcome for older people:
Build and maintain relationships
- Intergenerational activities
Name: Darija Boznik
Email address: email@example.com