HomeUsurbil town council and Matia Instituto will take the step of collectively building a new model of care.

Usurbil town council and Matia Instituto will take the step of collectively building a new model of care.

  • The new model of care that is intended to be built jointly between institutions, the care sector and community agents, while working on a shared culture of social care.

The City Council of Usurbil and Matia Instituto will initiate a participatory process on the model of care. In this process, the participation of institutions, the professional sector in the provision of care and community agents is planned, in order to collectively build this new model of care: this will necessarily involve the development of a shared culture of social care. This has been explained in a press conference by the mayoress, Agurtzane Solaberrieta and the researchers of Matía Institute, Ainara Tomasena and Erkuden Aldaz. Several meetings have already been held with different local agents and individuals to inform them about the details of the participation process and to get their involvement.


Fotografía con miembros del ayuntamiento de Usurbil y Matia Fundazioa 

Solaberrieta explained that there are several reasons why the city council decided to initiate a participatory process of this type. On the one hand, there is the collaboration maintained for many years by the city council and Matia Fundazioa, which has intensified with the innovative project of housing with care that Matia Fundazioa is building in Kalezar. "It is an innovative and pioneering project in the Basque Country, both from the social and urban planning aspects, since Matia Fundazioa will implement a new model of care aimed at the elderly to make the person who has necessarily had to go there feel at home." The Mayoress has recalled the social agreement that both institutions are working on the occasion of this project, which "will include a community vision of the model of attention and care centered in the person".

On the other hand, Solaberrieta has cited the diagnosis and action plan of the care regime of Beterri Buruntza carried out by Emagin, at the request of the equality technicians of the region. In her opinion, this work has laid the "essential foundation" to approach the participative process: "In fact, it approaches the issue of care from the bases of a feminist economy, a feminist and anti-racist viewpoint, and offers us a detailed picture of the care system".

In addition, the mayor has assured that the health crisis and the current context of Covid19 since the spring of 2020 "has only reaffirmed" the need to carry out this process. "It has put us in front of the mirror, naked, has brought to the surface our crises, our miseries, fragilities of this system. We have seen more than ever the importance of care and mutual care. While everything was stopped, care continued to go on". In addition to the role of care, Covid-19 highlighted the need to change the current model: "We have seen the imbalance between the needs and resources of care for citizens, and we have seen that the cost of this is paid by women, whether in the home, in the private sphere, or in the public sphere. We have seen how hard it has hit nursing homes and, therefore, it has brought to the surface even more the need to change the model".

In order to democratize care tasks, it will be necessary that care and domestic tasks "cease to be of a private, mercantile, feminine and precarious nature, as well as dependent on migratory processes. We must make them visible and give them political, social and economic recognition", said Solaberrieta. She insisted on the need to socialize and collectivize the tasks of care, to stop being the exclusive responsibility of the family and women and to become the responsibility of all the institutions, agents and people who make up society.

It is with this vocation that the participation process will begin. "We are aware that we are hardly going to have an impact on the labor market, but we want to build and implement a new model that has an impact on the community and administrative level, based on social justice and community welfare." Because of the broad scope of the topic, the council sees it necessary to first define care: "Care is not only related to illness or something we need both at the beginning and at the end of our life, because all our life we need the need to be cared for. The question is: how do we usurbildarras want to care? How do we want to be cared for? What commitments will we make to this as individuals, communities and institutions? ".

Las claves del proceso

Matia Fundazioa has solid experience in long-term care, "In defining a model of care in accordance with people's wishes and, at the same time, sustainable over time," explains Erkuden Aldaz. In his opinion, betting on this means focusing attention "necessarily" on homes and the community so that care is provided properly and when this is not possible, as far as possible, that the care is like at home. "The constitution of the caring village is, in our opinion, the way to the formation of a sustainable model of care in every sense." He gives as an example two projects they have promoted and developed: the Etxean Ondo project, subsidized by the Basque Government and the Etxean Bizi project, carried out with the sponsorship of the Provincial Council of Gipuzkoa.

These projects start from a person-centered model of care, according to Aldaz, based on the rights of choice and control of one's own life by each person. "This means seeing the person as a whole: starting from their capabilities and going beyond needs, taking into account the variables that are important for people's well-being and for living a life they want, fostering their self-determination and guaranteeing their dignity."

On this basis, he explained some of the keys that must be taken into account on the road to the formation of a care ecosystem:

  • Corresponsibility: we must internalize and assume that we are all responsible for care. Collective responsibility: of public institutions, social initiatives and community movements and associations, among others.
  • Participation: citizens are the protagonists in defining the care model they want for the people, so they should have real participation in the decisions taken. In the formation of this ecosystem of care, it is necessary the participation of all the agents belonging to it, in order to guarantee the support that each person needs in long-term care; from preventive actions to comprehensive and coordinated care in the last moments of life.
  • Transversality: different social sectors and areas of knowledge are necessary, from caregivers, people who need care, each one from their experience and knowledge, in order to provide comprehensive and coordinated responses and create safe and dignified contexts for caregivers and for those who perform the care. Promoting the relationship between health and social services, defining new services, making existing ones more flexible and transforming them, coordinating the use of different services, etc., as well as raising awareness of the whole ecosystem and empowering the professionals who will be in the articulation of all this.

Usurbil presentation press conference photo(From left to right). Erkuden Aldaz, co-director of Matia Instituto, Agurtzane Solabarrieta, mayor of Usurbil, and Ainara Tomasena, researcher at Matia Instituto.


Methodology of the participatory process

Ainara Tomasena assures that in the project two phases have been differentiated. In the first, to design among all the new model of care, and in the second, to define and begin to implement the roadmap to incorporate this model in the town. First, a driving group will be formed to carry out the process. It will involve people in need of support and their caregivers, as well as community agents considered key in the field of care, in order to reconcile people of different sensitivities. This will be the driving group for the project, which will determine how it will be developed. The first meeting of this group is scheduled for May. In addition to the driving group, other participatory forums will be set up for the rest of the agents and citizens to make their contributions.

A process that includes from analyzing how the current care system is to imagine what model of care they want in Usurbil in the coming months. The idea is to have this new model defined by the end of the year and, in 2022, little by little, begin to make changes.

Solaberrieta concludes by inviting citizens to next week's ciclo de charlas Elhuyar Solasaldi, as this session will revolve around care. Mayte Sancho, from Matia Fundazioa, and Miren Aranguren, from Emagin, will talk about long-term care and Aranguren about the Beterri Buruntza care regime. It will be held on April 21, at 6:30 p.m., at Sutegi. It is necessary to sign up to attend in person at usurbilkultura.eus and it will also be possible to follow in streaming on the same platform.