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The CCAS:what is its role? What help for seniors?

The CCAS:what is its role? What help for seniors?

Since the implementation of decentralization in the early 1980s, the State is no longer the only one with competences in social matters. Indeed, social action policies have also been distributed at the level of departments and municipalities. The latter exercise these powers through a public body, the Communal Center for Social Action (CCAS). What are the missions of the CCAS? How can it help seniors?

What is the Communal Center for Social Action (CCAS)? What are these missions?

The Municipal Center for Social Action (CCAS) is an organization which has the status of a public administrative establishment and which operates at the level of a municipality. It is administered by a board of directors and chaired by the mayor. Several municipalities can also join together and create what is called an Intermunicipal Center for Social Action (CIAS). The CCAS are represented at the national level by the National Union of Municipal and Intermunicipal Social Action Centers (UNCCAS).

In general, the CCAS is the main tool of a municipality in social matters because it is responsible for applying the social policy defined at the local level, in particular in favor of disadvantaged people. It is also he who manages the people who receive social assistance benefits on the territory of the municipality and participates in the processing of social assistance applications.

As a local institution of social action, the CCAS is the main observer of social demand on the territory of a municipality. This privileged position also makes it the organization best able to analyze the real needs of the population and above all to help define the social policy of a municipality.

This is why the CCAS implements preventive measures and facilitates the population's access to their social rights and, more generally, acts in favor of all forms of solidarity. To do this, this organization works closely with other public and private actors in the social life of the municipality.

A CCAS has mandatory attributions and others that are optional, defined by the Code of Social Action and Families. Thus, it intervenes in terms of optional social assistance which can take the form of benefits in cash or in kind (emergency relief, interest-free loans, food parcels, etc.), and with regard to requests for assistance legal social assistance such as medical assistance, the Active Solidarity Income (RSA), assistance for the elderly, etc., for which a CCAS provides reception, information, guidance and support.

In what ways can a CCAS help seniors?

Older people, like people with disabilities, are at the heart of CCAS action.

Firstly, all seniors in a municipality are subject to a census by the CCAS (identity, age, home address, etc.) which allows this organization to coordinate any interventions by social services with of all seniors, and in particular those who have specific needs, whether for medical or financial aid, or who are in a fragile situation.

In order to help seniors who wish to live as long as possible in their homes, a CCAS also has the possibility of creating and managing services intended for the elderly such as homes where they can be welcomed and benefit from actions leisure or cultural activities to avoid isolation, or, for example, to benefit from meals at a moderate price. A CCAS can also set up services such as home delivery of meals. These services benefit from different pricing depending on the resources of the seniors who benefit from them.

In terms of home care for the elderly, the CCAS also have the task of informing the people concerned about the aid that exists (material or financial) so that they can, for example, use home help or arrange their accommodation. In general, a CCAS also supports seniors in their application for social assistance such as the personalized autonomy allowance (APA), the solidarity allowance for the elderly, or the additional allowance for disability.

The CCAS intervenes extensively in terms of prevention. Aimed at seniors, it can thus offer information and actions related to health at the level of the municipality (prevention of falls, cardiovascular diseases, etc.).

As part of its optional powers, a CCAS may also be called upon, for example, to create and manage accommodation establishments for dependent elderly people (Ehpad), public homes for the elderly, or even independent residences. The latter, moreover, often open their restaurant to elderly people living nearby, at lunchtime but also in the evening.

Day care in these structures can be offered by the CCAS for seniors with a loss of autonomy or who suffer from Alzheimer's disease, for example.