Social Care Services: ‘Catching Up’ Amidst High Fragmentation and Poor Initiatives for Change
In the context of the Greek social protection system, which is geared towards income maintenance (albeit in a greatly fragmented way), social care services have developed slowly and variably. In the European comparative literature social care is usually defined as encompassing primarily personal social services, 1 to which informal support structures and activities are also added (Munday and Ely, 1996). Differences between countries, in terms of their social services efforts, are predominantly related to the spectrum of services supplied (as well as the overall balance between benefits in cash and kind) and the mode of funding, organisation and delivery. 2 A noteworthy convergence among European Union (EU) countries towards increasing investment in services relative to income transfers, in parallel with a wide diversification of forms of funding, organisation and delivery, has been highlighted by recent studies. 3 The aim of this chapter is to examine Greece’s position within this context.