Active Ageing and participation
Local service centres already exist more than 25 years. From in the beginning they focus especially on older adults. In 1998 the Service centres were officially recognized by the Flemish Community in the ‘Thuiszorgdecreet’.
Out of their philosophy, local service centres strive to achieve a quality of life as high as possible for their users. They offer the target group (older adults) a variety of chances: to meet each other, to participate to socio-cultural activities, education, physical activities. The local service centre is seen as the beating heart of the neighbourhood for the target group. During the past decades they organise numerous services (restaurant, meeting place, hairdresser, cleaning service, transport, support with your administration, information, … ). What makes the local service centre so specific is the fact that all the initiatives are offered in a flexible way adapted to the real needs of the older adult.
We visited Local service centre ‘De Olijtak’ in the citycentre of Antwerp. It is one of the 188 local service centres in Flanders (there are 308 cities in Flanders).