BOGOTA: PIONEER CARING CITY IN LATIN AMERICA

In a significant step towards gender equity and the recognition of unpaid care work, Bogotá in Colombia, has become one of the main cities in Latin America to establish a municipal system of care.

This innovative model seeks to contribute to equal opportunities for women through the institutional services offered by the District care system, an initiative by the Municipality Secretariat for Women, that reduces and redistributes unpaid care work.

This system addresses the needs of those who care for those most vulnerable. Launched in 2019, under the administration of Mayor Claudia Lopez, the municipality has established twenty-one “care blocks” in different parts of the city, served by “care buses” that bring professional help to individual homes ti support people caring for their love ones, often elderly or with different type of disabilities who require full-time support from carers.

The “Home care” program provides relieve to overburden caregivers, by bringing professional help to the homes of these vulnerable population and providing services such legal assistance, job skills or cultural activities to the carers, also promoting the recognition of care work.

During year 2023, the program benefited a total of 102 households in the neighborhoods of Ciudad Bolivar, Bosa and Kennedy. Each of these beneficiaries have experienced important improvement in their quality of life, these are some of the project numbers:

  • Home care service: a total of 1.287 sessions where organized to benefit 102 caregivers for a total of 4.917 hours of support.
  • Evaluation of theoretical-practical knowledge on caregiving and certification of knowledge in alliance with the National learning program – SENA: 85 caregivers have received formal certification for new job skills.
  • Legal assistance service: 90% of the households received legal aid, with a total of 196 consultations on issues such getting an appointment with the doctor, concerns about the right to receive a disability pension, vouchers or disability certifications, among others.  
  • Cultural transformation service: 2 workshops were held on the theme “Learning to care”, in which 70% of the households participated. 

This pioneering achievement demonstrates the capacity of Latin American cities to lead significant changes that transcend borders and set new standards for a more inclusive and equitable society.