Focus shifts to universal welfare for ordinary people from traditional welfare for underprivileged classes
The “Seoul Welfare Net” policy was launched to significantly expand social safety net coverage to housing, culture, education, health, and childcare for ordinary people, away from traditional welfare policies toward five underprivileged classes: low-income people, people with disabilities, the elderly, women, and children.
Beyond the traditional welfare policies that mainly offer money to needy people, the Seoul Welfare Net policy aims to help them stand on their own feet and help them become more mentally self-reliant. By taking into consideration a change in the administrative environment and lifestyle, Seoul City also plans to expand the coverage of welfare services to all citizens, allowing them to receive such services whenever they need.
As the name of the new policy indicates, the Seoul Welfare Net policy aims to ensure a tightly-knit social safety net, by strengthening the existing 220 welfare projects such as the “Seoul Hope Dream Project” for low-income people, the “9988 Seniors Project,” the “A Happy City for the Disabled Project,” the “Women’s Happiness Project” and the “Dream Tree (Child Development) Project.” In addition, Seoul City is adding another 130 projects on issues such as housing for the elderly and childbirth to the of new welfare policy list.
In other words, the new welfare initiative aims to provide a safety net to all citizens without blind spots and greater benefits for low-income, underprivileged people that increase self-reliance.
‘Seoul Welfare Net Center,’ one-stop service, management center for about 300 welfare services
To that end, Seoul City formed the ” Seoul Welfare Net Center” under the Seoul Welfare Foundation with the aim of providing one-stop services for about 300 welfare services. By making an organized collection of vast data on the city’s welfare policies, the center is comprehensively managing them. Also, the center is offering one-stop services by making on-site consultations and linking services to each other. At the center, there are ten experts with the title of ”welfare manager” and 130 volunteers who work as ”on-site consultants.” The consultants also build cooperative relationships with local districts, community service centers, social welfare facilities, and private organizations. In particular, they assist people with urgent needs to get help from those organizations.
Consultants meet people who need welfare benefits
Most importantly, the Seoul Welfare Net policy enables on-site consultants to meet people who are less fortunate and need welfare services beyond the traditional form of welfare services in which most officials wait for needy people to visit their offices.
If needy people are reported by a community service center or register themselves with the Seoul Welfare Net Center, an on-site consultant will visit their homes and survey what benefits they require. The consultant then helps a relevant organization provide welfare services to them.