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The InCARE project will contribute to the design  of a coherent and coordinated approach to the development of national long-term care policy and care services at local and regional level, by establishing socially innovative and participatory decision-making processes.

We work with care users, care provider organizations and policy-makers in Spain, Austria and North Macedonia to design, implement and scale-up innovative care services, with the ultimate goal of improving the well-being of older people and their families and increase their access to adequate and affordable care.

[Translated] I have long cared for my sister and my mother, and now my husband who has cancer and is bedridden! I wish someone [could support me] for a few hours or once a few days so that I could go away once with my daughter and granddaughter or make a trip!

Woman, 67
[Translated] None of the services I have used have the means to help dependent people with multiple sclerosis. It’s a horror. I have to do everything on my own because the home carers for example can’t come if I’m in hospital or on rehabilitation…the domestic helpers are no longer available, I am not entitled to a transport service … I never qualify. I am revolted. I live alone without family and it’s really hard. I’ve been able to get help at times but it doesn’t last because the budgets are so small. Even people with severe physical disabilities don’t have adequate help. The Aviq [Agence pour une Vie de Qualité] has not been functioning for years… the situation is very serious. And it has become even worse with Covid.

Woman, 40
[Translated] I would like such surveys to be more efficient and to have more participation in them, and consequently I would like to talk and learn more about these issues in order to take action and make life easier for many individuals.

Woman, 22

Thanks for keeping this in the public eye. No easy answers, I’m not sure I agree with all of mine today, but we must keep trying!!

United Kingdom
[translated] It is not easy to gain the trust of a stranger and let them take care of you. Trust and safety are also very important factors in receiving /providing long-term care.

Woman, 45
North Macedonia
[Translated – excerpt] Long-term care is an obligation of society. The administration has to participate and set criteria for equality, but it has to get involved in management, if it wants to do so under the same conditions as everyone else. Give a choice to the citizen who chooses what he/she wants, not what the administration thinks (free choice). Care should be directed by the people, not only centred on them. Empowerment of the citizen. Promote professional training and above all competences and skills. Increase staff ratios and salaries, and above all work/family/leisure balance. There is a lot of work to be done.

Man, 55
[Translated] I am not happy with the current nursing home system and it is a system that is focused on services and not on people. It is desirable that this changes with everyone’s help.

Woman, 41
[Translated] I would not want my future to be in the hands of politicians but in the hands of qualified experts.

[Translated] I lost my father last year (cancer). We kept him at home, with my brothers and sister, almost until the end; we are now looking after our mother. She has been in a nursing home for several months. We take turns every day to get her up, wash her, dress her, feed her and take her out. The staff at the care home is always on leave, there is a high turnover of staff. Not only does my mother pay, we each pay a small part of the accommodation, but we are the ones who take care of her from morning to night. That’s why we are part-time.

Woman, 55

For the past ten years, I have been providing care to my mother with dementia and complex care needs whilst at the same time raising two children alone following the break-up of my marriage due to domestic abuse, and trying to combine this with work. I am exhausted and feel completely burnt out. Caring has negatively impacted on my work and career and affected my family life. My mother has recently moved to a small scale nursing home where she is so happy and so well looked after. There is huge pressure on families to continue to look after people with highly complex care needs and I question that. There are too few small scale nursing homes in Ireland.

Woman, 55
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