“Strategic Plans for Social Services should promote social inclusion and social services quality”

Meet Meritxell Benedi, General Director of Social Services in the Ministry of Employment, Social Affairs and Families of the Regional Government of Catalonia, Spain. Meritxell tells us how the Government of Catalonia is currently in the process of adopting a new Strategic Plan for Social Services for 2021-2024 that will function as roadmap for the Catalan Social Services. We asked Meritxell what the mission of the Strategy is and how they have worked in its development.

Meritxell explained that the mission of the Strategy is to ensure that all citizens have the same chances to shape their lives supported by the care and support they need and the promotion of their personal autonomy. We have worked together with colleagues to develop a plan that reflects the commitment of the government to ensure that social policies are implemented with the aim to improve social services efficiency and coverage in Catalonia. Quality, innovation, diversity and usercentred are examples of guiding principles that will shape the strategy.

We asked Meritxell how ESN has supported her and the Ministry in learning from others, and this is what she answered:

"ESN offers many opportunities to network with other key decision-makers in social services. Through the annual European Social Services Conference, thematic working groups and peer-learning visits, ESN has created a platform where we can learn about how to promote quality in social services from across Europe."