Chile Solidario is the component of the Social Protection System in charge of serving families, people, and areas in social vulnerability condition. It was founded in 2002, as a governmental strategy oriented to tackle high poverty. Later, the consolidation of an institutional network supporting social integration, the production of mechanisms to extend the opportunities available to people in these areas, and the formation of the Ficha Social, allowed Chile Solidario to enlarge its support to other groups, creating initiatives to cover different vulnerability situations affecting population.
The Government of the President Michelle Bachelet has endorsed the significance of having policy mechanisms which help to contribute to the full execution of people‘s rights, particularly, reverting inequities that have a negative impact in their present wellness and their future possibilities. For this end, Government‘s social agenda has been oriented to create and enhance policies that assure social welfare basic conditions to the whole population, from birth to old-age. According to this, Chile Solidario is part of a wider social security policy where rights are implemented through the main areas of social policy, such as education, health, and social and welfare security.
Practically, Chile Solidario is a management model, represented by the Executive Secretariat of the Ministerio de Desarollo Social y de las Secretarías Regionales Ministeriales, both in charge of coordinating institutions responsible for providing social welfare, for them to work in the network. The system generates specific resources for the users‘ necessities not included in the regular service, through extending current social programs or creating new programs to service demands that have not been covered. It operates as a decentralized system closely related to local government, municipalities, and people responsible for main functions of social security. In this manner, Chile Solidario works as a complement and enhances its purpose, providing technical, methodological and financial resources that ensure a timely and quality response to the more vulnerable families and people of these areas.
Also, it has a legal framework that rules the system functioning, establishes the operation way of its components, and regulates trust system. This framework explains the operation principles of the system, its scope and modes, and, mainly, establishes those benefits that must be assigned to people by right. This makes this system distinctive in relation to the traditional way used to assign benefits through application and waiting list.
To contact the families and people in a higher vulnerability situation, Chile Solidario uses the Ficha de Protección Social. But also, it generates linking and accompanying devices allowing the integration of the users to the social security network to provide an efficient use of the opportunities structure available in the programs, services and monetary benefits. To this end, Chile Solidario works through its own programs to link and enable people, which function as mediation, advice and accompanying devices. They are specialized psychosocial support services that through specific social-educational methodologies, propose accompanying paths which facilitates the families and people‘s transition to other process of social integration. They are the following:
- The Bridge Program, aimed to high poverty families. It is in charge of municipalities and is administered and technically assisted by the Fondo de Solidaridad e Inversión Social (FOSIS).
- The Bind Program, aimed to support vulnerable elderly citizens who live by their own. It is a program in charge of municipalities and technically assisted by Servicio Nacional del Adulto Mayor (SENAMA).
- The Street Program, aimed to work with adults in this situation (living in the street). It may be performed indistinctively by municipalities, Provincial Governments and NGO‘s and its management and technical assistance is in charge of Ministerio de Desarollo Social.
- The Opening Pathways Program, aimed at supporting children in families where there are situations of forced separation because of the enforcement order of one of its members. The program is implemented by NGOs and their design and methodological support is provided by Ministerio de Desarollo Social.
To generate the conditions for the people in need of support and assistance to have real access to the resources able to provide them a basic welfare level, and to identify people‘s vulnerability contexts through the Ficha de Protección Social, along with generating linking strategies according to the profile of each group through its psychosocial support programs, Chile Solidario offers monetary benefits as a guarantee for those eligible. Among them, there are the Subsidio Único Familiar (SUF), the Subsidio al Consumo de Agua Potable y Uso de Alcantarillado (SAP), the Subsidio a la Cédula de Identidad and the Pensión Básica Solidaria (PBS).
On the other hand, Chile Solidario complements this people selection system, allocation of benefits, social-educational intervention and psychosocial help, generating preferences and support in the access to the social programs and services of the local institutional network, many of them having direct alliance with Chile Solidario. Therefore, this scheme increase the possibilities for the people to make use of it to ensure better levels of welfare and to participate more autonomously in the familiar, social, and productive life.