Albufeira bets on the creation of a Childhood Guarantee Center

Minister Ana Mendes Godinho was in Albufeira

The protocol for the implementation and follow-up of the Albufeira Childhood Nucleus was signed on Friday, the 29th, in a ceremony that took place outside the newly opened Creche de Olhos de Água, in the Medronheira Tower, and was attended by Ana Mendes Godinho, Minister of Labor, Solidarity and Social Security.

Cooperation Agreements were also signed for the Nursery, Day Care and Home Support Services, between Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Albufeira and the Social Security Institute, through the District Center for Faro.

In the case of the protocol for the implementation and monitoring of the Child Guarantee Center (NLGPI) in Albufeira, it was signed by councilor Cláudia Guedelha, responsible for Social Action in the Municipality of Albufeira, as president of the Local Council for Social Action in Albufeira. Albufeira, and by Sónia Almeida, National Childhood Guarantee Coordinator. The document was ratified by Minister Ana Mendes Godinho.

According to the Albufeira Council, with the creation of the NLGPI, «a structure specially dedicated to responding effectively to the vulnerabilities of children and young people, and their families, will be constituted, through an integrated and multidisciplinary approach, simultaneously promoting cohesion and social development and promoting effective social integration».

«The protocol establishes the competences and specific actions to be developed by the Albufeira Nucleus, in the sense of preventing and combating poverty and social exclusion of the said population, within the scope of the implementation of the Childhood Guarantee Action Plan 2022-2030», adds.

This structure assumes several commitments, namely “carrying out social diagnosis; to integration, in the social development plan, to develop a strategic axis dedicated to the prevention and intervention in the context of child poverty, to adopt models of integrated and participatory intervention and to implement a system for collecting and sharing information that allows the existence of an updated social diagnosis and contribute to the monitoring of the Child Guarantee Action Plan 2022 – 2030».

As for the cooperation agreements signed by Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Albufeira and Social Security, “they stipulate the obligations of both parties, as well as technical and financial support for the operation” of the social responses in question.

For Patrícia Seromenho, provider of the Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Albufeira, these agreements «place the focus on people» and are positive, «because it is an intergenerational equipment»

«This year, Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Albufeira starts the school year with 220 children, 78 more than last year, an almost identical number to what is on the waiting list, which demonstrates the great investment that is made, especially by Municipality of Albufeira», he said.

The same person in charge revealed that the Misericórdia de Albufeira has available, in Quinta dos Pardais, «the first floor that can receive more children, as long as there is funding for that».

The next challenge, he said, is the entry into operation of ERPI – Residential Structure for Elderly People.

«The expectations are that in January, or perhaps even earlier, we will be able to have everything prepared, namely the staff list completed so that we can conclude the Cooperation Agreement with Social Security», revealed Patrícia Seromenho.

The mayor of Albufeira underlined that «the signing of these documents is synonymous with trust in the institutions and this is salutary, considering the involvement of various entities (Municipality, PNGPI, Santa Casa, Social Security, CCDRA, Ministry of Labor and Security Social)".

«Children and the elderly are those most in need and, as can be seen in the NGPI Protocol and in the Agreements between the SCMA and the ISS for the different areas, they are integration facilities that welcome everyone in need».

The Albufeira City Council «has built and is building a set of equipment, for young and less young people, which it places at the service of the community».

«We have a social association with several IPSS that are extremely important for the municipality, in whom we trust and to whom we pose these great challenges. And it's not just to Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Albufeira (which, in addition to this equipment, we also delivered a nursery in Guia), but also to Nuclegarve (which will soon have similar equipment in Fontainhas), and to the António Silva Foundation Leal, who will be responsible for managing the Albufeira Continuing Care Unit, to be built in the parish of Guia, among others».

«We are all working and making efforts to improve the social and educational area and this cannot be achieved without IPSS and government support; because without human and financial resources it is totally impossible», concluded José Carlos Rolo.

«Ensuring that 16% of the children who are at risk of extreme poverty in Portugal have the same opportunities to have a life like each one of us is the great challenge. If this does not happen, we as a society are failing», said Ana Mendes Godinho.

«We have to guarantee children the scissors that can cut the cycles of poverty that tend to persist», said the minister.