A range of demonstration projects are underway around the country as proof of concept and will feed into the policy appraisal process which was mandated by the VFM Review as an essential project milestone. Just over 100 of these demonstration projects have been grant-aided by a non-profit organisation, the Genio Trust (with funding provided by the HSE) and they will provide a substantial contribution towards the transition to the new model of person-centred supports. The grants have been targeted at the following areas:
- Projects to move/keep people out of institutional care by supporting them to live as independently as possible in the community, resulting in institutional closure;
- Active integration of people with disabilities into mainstream work, third level education and leisure activities;
- Measures to strengthen and build networks of support comprising family, friends and neighbours offering alternative respite;
- Empowerment of people with disabilities to take control of their own lives and strengthening of strategic advocacy particularly on the part of people with disabilities.
In addition to the projects which the HSE are funding through Genio, the National Federation of Voluntary Bodies are working with service providers through the Next Steps and Immersion initiatives, to support demonstration projects and shared learning in respect of the person centred supports model