Improving social services: European Social Catalyst Fund supports scaling of proven innovations
The European Social Catalyst Fund (ESCF) is supporting 7 organisations across Europe to scale proven innovations across a range of areas including employment, ageing, homelessness, mental health, migrants, digital inclusion, and ecological and social transition. Plans will be developed for these innovations in a total of 17 European countries. The ESCF was launched last year, with the King Baudouin Foundation as one of its founding partners.
All eligible applications were evaluated against published criteria by the ESCF Consortium represented by the Genio Trust, Robert Bosch Stiftung, the King Baudouin Foundation with advice from the ESCF Advisory Group. 7 applications were chosen to receive financial and non-financial support to develop plans to scale proven innovations across a range of challenge areas including employment, ageing, homelessness, mental health, migrants, digital inclusion, and ecological and social transition. Plans will be developed for these innovations in a total of 17 countries, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain. It is intended that in 9 of the 17 countries plans will be developed to scale more than one innovation.
Long Live the Elderly - To scale a Community-based pro-Active Monitoring Program (CAMP) targeting people aged over 80, followed by the implementation of Individualized Care Plans (ICPs) to mitigate the impact of frailty on citizens’ quality of life and use of care services.
SUITE - To scale a proven innovation aimed at effectively reducing energy poverty by giving training and support to social operators tackling situations of vulnerability.
WA Helps All - To scale a Web Accessibility (WA) enabling & measuring tool for people with disability, critical for digital inclusiveness. The innovation targets a key accessibility problem experienced by many CEEC countries and facilitates knowledge transfer across Europe.
Duo for a Job - To scale a mentoring programme for young people with a non-EU migrant background to find a job with the guidance of mentors aged 50+.
Individual Placement & Support - To scale Individual Placement and Support (IPS) approach for people with severe and enduring mental health conditions to gain and sustain paid employment.
Alternatives to Detention - To increase adoption of engagement-based, case management centred alternatives to detention pilots based on a social work approach.
From Streets to Homes – Planning scale-up strategies for a Social Housing Agency (SHA) creating affordable housing for homeless, vulnerable, and low-middle income groups.
The 7 selected organisations/consortia are now developing their scaling plans which will be submitted by 30 September 2021. For more information on the successful applicants to the ESCF, please visit ESCF’s website.
A special event ‘How to Plan the Scaling of Social Innovations’ will be held in December 2021 during which the plans will be presented with a description of the challenges and opportunities encountered and the lessons learned. This should be of particular interest to those interested in scaling social innovations to meet challenges faced across EU countries. Further information on this event will be shared in the coming months.