Experts by Experience in Poverty & in Social Exclusion
Innovation Players in the Belgian Federal Public Services

By Marie-Therese Casman, et al.
December 2010
Distributed By Coronet Books
ISBN: 9789044126983
128 pages
$39.50 Paper Original

Adopted by the Council of Ministers of the Belgian Federal Government on the proposal of Marie Arena and launched in 2005 by its administration, the FPS-Social Integration, with the support of the European Social Fund, the Experts by experience in poverty and social exclusion aims to develop, within Belgian federal public services, a new function designed to reduce the divide between the administration of the people in situations of poverty, initiate practices more adapted to these users and reinforce their access to their rights.

Having themselves experienced poverty at some point in their lives, these experts of a new kind are trained and integrated into different services in order to drive changes 'from the inside'. Designed to be adapted as closely as possible to the realities encountered in the field by each service, their roles are very varied and are basedon five key objectives: to improve the reception of the target public, provide supports for procedures inside and out the service, suggest changes and contribute to setting up the proposed changes, encourage inter-departmental cooperation on the multifaceted challenge of fighting poverty and, finally, communicate the needs and expectations of the target public on a political level.

Written jointly by PANEL, the research centre on social dynamics of the University of Liege, and OASES, the centre on inequality, poverty, social exclusion and the city of Antwerp University, this publication, through the presentation of ten cases by experts by experiencing in poverty and social exclusion working in nine seperate services, invites readers to discover this project in a concrete and lively manner by showing how it has effectively been able to poduce many structural innovations and contribute to the crucial challenge of fighting poverty within extremely varied professional contexts.


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