Cáritas Coimbra hosted the 4th Interregional Policy Learning Meeting of the EU_SHAFE Project

On November 24-25, 2021, Caritas Coimbra held the 4th Inter-regional Policy Learning Meeting of the EU_SHAFE project. This meeting focused on Domain 4, Health and Community Services. The meeting took place in a hybrid format with the participation of more than 20 EU_SHAFE project partners, from the Basque Country, Slovenia, Ireland, Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark, and stakeholders from the Central Region of Portugal. The event was organized by Caritas Coimbra’s Innovation Department to promote the exchange of experiences and present the good practices in the field of health and community services.

On November 24, the consortium partners and invited stakeholders learned more about the projects being implemented at Caritas Coimbra, as well as the organization’s social care and support services. After this brief presentation of Caritas Coimbra, the partners presented their best practices and discussed past experiences. On the same day, the participants had the opportunity to visit the Municipal Services of Urban Transport of Coimbra, in portuguese Serviços Municipalizados de Transportes Urbanos de Coimbra, (SMTUC). They heard about the Blue Line – the electric bus “Pantufinhas” –  selected by Caritas Coimbra as a good practice in accessibility and sustainability for the EU_SHAFE project. In addition to the explanation, the participants had the opportunity to travel on the Blue Line, a visit promoted by SMTUC. They were confronted with the reality of older people who live in the city’s historic centre. Participants experienced the difficulty that these residents would have without the support of this line of urban transport. They also got to know the historic Sé Velha area, as well as the Parque Verde do Mondego area.

On November 25, the regional stakeholders in Portugal –Centro Regional Coordination and Development Commission (CCDRC), in Portuguese Comissão de Coordenação e Desenvolvimento Regional do Centro; Inter-municipal Community of Médio Tejo (CIMT), in Portuguese, Comunidade Intermunicipal da Região do Médio Tejo, Inter-municipal Community of the Centro Region (CIM), in Portuguese, Comunidade Intermunicipal da Região Centro and University of Coimbra, Universidade de Coimbra – shared their best practices to promote the international exchange of learning policies between different territories. Among them, the participants got to know the “Transportation on demand” of Inter-municipal Community of Médio Tejo; the Mobile Health Units of the Inter-municipal Community of the Centro Region (CIM); the Best Practice in Active and Healthy Ageing Catalogue from CCDRC and Conselhos Repórteres 55+, a project coordinated by Caritas Coimbra with University of Coimbra – Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences. The meeting ended with a visit to a regional good practice for domain 1 – Housing and Infrastructure: The Autonomous Homes in Pinhal. Partners visited this senior village to see how this social care and support service promotes the autonomy of older adults living there.

This meeting was crucial for the exchange of inter-regional learning in age-friendly environments. These work sessions were key to helping the consortium in the activities of the second phase of the project in which partners must deliver an action plan resulting from this learning experiences.

The EU_SHAFE project aims to influence the policy and funding of the Region within the scope of SHAFE (Healthy, Smart and Age- Friendly Environments) through the contributions of a cooperative regional ecosystem between public authorities, regional networks, academia, associations and civil society and companies. Simultaneously, project partners share and promote their good practices with the other 6 regions of the project. The project is funded by the Interreg Europe programme, funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

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