During the year the activity of the Office of the Director
General focused on the strengthening and modernization of the administration
of the Division through the effective employment of available human and
material resources. The final objective of the Office of the Director General
is a slimmer organization better able to provide the professional services
expected of it.
A considerable number of meetings between and for management and personnel at all levels were held during the year. In these meetings problems were trashed out, new polices evolved, and information was given to keep all informed of the changes being effected or envisaged.
A rationalization exercise involving the re-deployment of a significant number of personnel was carried out in conjunction with the Director for Corporate Services in the Ministry.
With the help of the Management Systems Unit the computerization
programme was stepped up and Personal Computers and software provided wherever
needed. Participation of Divisional personnel in training programmes organized
by the Staff Development Organization was intensified.
A Re-organization Agreement for Care-Workers was signed with the unions. This agreement specifies the roles of carers in Adult Training Centres and Homes for the elderly and grants them grades and pay scales established within the parameters set in the report on Public Service reform.
A second Agreement signed by the Director General with
the Unions governs the conditions of service of the Division personnel
seconded with Sedqa.
A Modern Working Environment
A more suitable working environment for our personnel is being created through the refurbishing of the Centru Hidma Socjali started in 1994 and which will be finalized in 1996. Modern functional office furniture and equipment was procured.
The refurbishing of the first and second floor of the
Conservatorio Vincenzo Bugeja was started. This programme will be completed
in 1996 and will make possible the transfer of the Telecare Service to
larger premises. These premises will also house a new service which will
be provided by the Division, that is the Centre for emotionally disturbed
In April, the Director General was appointed the Maltese Representation to the World Commission on Social Development. In this capacity, Mr. De Gabriele participated in the 34th Session of the Commission held in New York during the same month. The active participation of the Director General enhanced Malta's standing with the members of the Commission.
In October, the Director General led the Maltese delegation
that participated in the International Conference on Adoption held by the
Romanian Government in Bucharest. Both during and after the Conference,
the Maltese delegation held bi-lateral talks with the Romanian authorities
to explore ways and means of accelerating the legal and administrative
procedures involved in the adoption of Romanian children by Maltese couples.
Relations with Non-Governmental Organizations
The encouragement of the active participation of N.G.O.'s in social welfare is one of the most important facets of Government policy in this area. The Division implements this policy through the conclusion of bi-lateral agreements with the individual N.G.O.'s. A number of these agreements were signed. Through these agreements Government funds are provided to those N.G.O.'s whose programme of activities and outputs in the field of social welfare, as defined in an appropriate project document drawn up in conjunction with the NGO Project Selection Committee of the Ministry, is considered of maximum benefit to a particular sector of Maltese society. Needless to say sound administrative and financial management are also given due consideration.
In this sphere, the Agreement signed by the Director General
with the Richmond Foundation deserves special mention since it enables
both the Ministry as well as the Division to proceed with one of their
most cherished projects. With the help of Government funds, the Richmond
Foundation will be turning Villa Chelsea into a Residential Home and Day
Centre for young people suffering from mild chronic mental disturbances.
These facilities will become operational in the first quarter of 1996 when
it is hoped that the first group of young people will start being helped
towards total social rehabilitation leading to their complete integration
in Maltese society.
The programme of action undertaken by the office of the Director General during the year produced a number of significant changes which, it is hoped, will in turn lead to a higher degree of client satisfaction. Among them it is worthwhile mentioning:
i. the shedding off of all sections providing common services;
ii. the positions and duties of all personnel are now more specific and better related to grades;
iii. a better working environment has been created for most personnel;
iv. recruitment has been restricted almost completely to professional personnel such as Social Workers and to carers working directly with people with Special needs;
v. the two departments are now in a better position to
concentrate on the delivery of the services expected of them.