The temporary reception centre to receive the homeless in Madeira, in response to Covid-19, has a capacity for 60 people and welcomed 18 on the first night, said today the Regional Secretary for Social Inclusion and Citizenship.
As of yesterday [Friday], the first day of reception, 18 homeless people have already spent the night in the new facilities, this being a dynamic work, which will continue over the next few days, said Augusta Aguiar to the agency Lusa.
“All homeless people, hosted at this centre, will take the Covid-19 test,” she said.
The reception centre is “capable of accommodating 60 users overnight, in this first phase,” the answer being extended “up to the limit of 100 people”.
The center was set up in the Parque Desportivo dos Trabalhadores – Dr. Sidónio Fernandes, in the parish of São Martinho, in the municipality of Funchal.
The person responsible for Social Inclusion in Madeira said that all the logistics of this social response included “collaboration in equipping and assembling the equipment (beds, tables, chairs and other necessary elements) of the Garrison Regulation No. 3 [RG3]”.
As for food support, hygiene and psychosocial and nursing support, the government official also guaranteed that “it is being ensured, in conjunction with the partner entities of the Regional Plan for the Integration of People in Homeless Situations [PRIPSSA]”.
Augusta Aguiar underlined that, in this case, “there is a whole previous work, in a network, that preceded this transition”, which involved “monitoring the institutions that work daily in the field with this population and know their reality, in order to raise awareness for the importance and greater security.
The official also highlighted the work of the multidisciplinary teams that will work in this area, doing “daily monitoring”, which involves ensuring “necessary hygienic, psychosocial, nursing and medical support”, in addition to “monitoring people in homeless situations, in conjunction with the Public Security Police [PSP] “.
These teams “will consist of social workers, psychologists, sociologists and social workers of the Social Security Institute of Madeira and partner organizations working in this field, health professionals and volunteers from partner institutions, working in shifts,” she said.
“Given the current state of emergency, and the measures adopted to prevent the spread of Covid-19 disease, the temporary reception centre proves to be an adequate social response to the protection of the homeless population ”, she stressed, pointing out that it will work“ as long as it lasts the current pandemic situation ”
In the opinion of Augusta Aguiar, “it makes sense to continue this effort to confine people in situations of homelessness, giving them better conditions to fulfil the social isolation recommended for the entire population”, taking into account the protection of this most vulnerable population
The Government of Madeira has acted in an integrated manner, reinforcing social measures and responses, and in the area of support and protection of people in situations of homelessness, it will continue to closely monitor this population, in articulation with partner members, providing an integrated response that enhances the prevention of the spread of Covid-19 ”.
In an update today, all those in the shelter tested negative for the virus.