Muhandolbom (Unlimited Care)
Gyeonggi Provincial Government

A. Problem Analysis

 1. What was the problem before the implementation of the initiative?
□ While the Republic of Korea achieved rapid economic growth, praised as the “Miracle on the Han River,” the nation’s social welfare system lagged behind its economic success. ○ The nation rose from the ashes of the Korean War and laid the foundation for economic growth, which was driven by growth-oriented policies, but this came at the expense of attention to welfare policies requiring resource allocation. □ The economic downturns in the wake of the Asian financial crisis in 1997 and the global financial crisis in 2008 dealt severe blows to underprivileged members of Korean society. ○ This led to a sharp increase in family collapse, child abandonment, divorce rates, suicide rates, and homeless and itinerant populations. □ Under these circumstances, it became necessary to protect the vulnerable populations in the blind spots of the welfare system, left unattended under the existing laws and regulations of Korea. ○ Some families as well as children, senior citizens, and those with disabilities suffered through urgent situations but could not receive any public support since they failed to meet the eligibility criteria stipulated by the Korean government. ○ Despite an increase in national welfare budgets and some 250 welfare services provided by the government, problems persisted, including service duplication, blind spots left unaddressed, and decreases in levels of welfare satisfaction. □ In addition, social service offerings were inconsistent and often duplicated because of an inefficient and fragmented delivery system or welfare policies. ○ Without sufficient partnerships between public and private organizations, partial and short-term services were provided to families in crisis. ○ As a result, Gyeonggi Province required a welfare system that reflected the diverse and unique needs of the 31 cities and counties in the province. ⇒ It was essential to establish a welfare delivery system driven by the local governments closest to their residents. ⇒ It was the right time for ‘communities,’ going beyond the narrow scope of a ‘family,’ to take the initiative in protecting and helping those left neglected in the “blind spots of the social safety net.”

B. Strategic Approach

 2. What was the solution?
□ The Gyeonggi Provincial Government proposed the initiative for a third-level social safety net administered by local governments. ○ Through numerous discussions and public hearing sessions, engaging with on-site social welfare workers, academic experts and officials, the concepts of the “Unlimited Care Project” and “Unlimited Care Centers” were developed. □ The Gyeonggi Provincial Government and the Gyeonggi Welfare Foundation came up with a comprehensive case management model customized for the province. ○ The model is based on a multi-layered case management system linking private institutions to communities, cities, counties and Gyeonggi Province, which serves as a welfare network that operates at all times to detect families in crisis, support each case and offer post-service management. - Systematic public-private partnerships enable comprehensive service offerings and management functions. □ The Mission of the “Unlimited Care Project” ○ No one will go hungry or drop out of school due to the cost of living. ○ No one will get sicker because they cannot receive treatment or miss the right opportunity due to medical expenses. ○ No family will collapse due to economic difficulties. ○ Gyeonggi Province will take the initiative in protecting vulnerable populations through continuous management at all times. □ The Gyeonggi Provincial Government has initiated an independent support service for families in crisis. ○ When there are families that cannot receive support under Korean government welfare policies or have received support but still fail to escape the crisis, Gyeonggi Province immediately intervenes and protects them from slipping into destitution. ○ The Gyeonggi Provincial Government launched the project in November 2008 under the title of “Unlimited Care” by reflecting the “unwavering commitment of Gyeonggi Province” to helping low-income families overcome crisis situations and thus maintain a stable livelihood.

 3. How did the initiative solve the problem and improve people’s lives?
□ Initiating outreach services ○ Through the Centers, officials and private welfare workers join with volunteer workers, who are well-informed of community situations, to visit and help families in the early stages of crisis. ○ They offer tangible benefits to alienated citizens who lack access to welfare information or are not able to move around easily. □ Offering immediate services ○ The Centers' welfare system is managed under the principle of “providing support before screening.” ○ Their Prime Time measure ensures the visitation of families within eight hours and provides welfare benefits within three days upon receiving their application. ○ On-site officials are granted comprehensive authority to deal with unpredictable and diverse crisis situations. □ Mobilizing private resources ○ The Centers serve as the hub of the welfare system, linking the functions of all community service agencies like hospitals, welfare centers, and self-sufficiency centers and integrating community services related to jobs, housing, education and public health. ○ To supplement finite public financing, they develop human and material resources in the private sector, thus instilling a culture of sharing across communities. ○ They designate network teams and categorize them into urban, rural and hybrid types customized to specific community situations.

C. Execution and Implementation

 4. In which ways is the initiative creative and innovative?
□ The Unlimited Care Centers: Offering outreach services, which promote hands-on administration to urgently find families in crisis and provide support ○ How they operate: Workers involved in the Unlimited Care Centers of the province, cities and counties jointly visit and find families in crisis twice a week. ○ Whom they visit: Households without access to welfare service agencies, including elderly households having difficulties in moving around or those alienated from information, in 1,181 areas with a high population of low-income families in Gyeonggi Province □ The Unlimited Care Project: Providing immediate support for families in crisis ○ Eligibility Criteria - Household income: Below 170 percent of the minimum cost of living, the upper ceiling of Korean government support - Household property: Below KRW 150 million in large cities, KRW 95 million in small and mid-sized cities, KRW 81 million in agricultural and fishery areas ○ Eligible recipients: Families in crisis due to death, divorce, illness or job loss. ○ Benefits: Livelihood benefits, medical benefits, housing benefits, education benefits, social welfare facility fee benefits, heating fee benefits, childbirth benefits, funeral benefits, electricity bill benefits, linking to relevant public and private organizations □ The Unlimited Care Centers: Continuously managing families in crisis through comprehensive case management ○ Operation: 31 city and county Unlimited Care Centers and 95 Network Teams in Gyeonggi Province ○ Roles: Continuously managing families facing long-term and complicated crisis situations, and linking and monitoring various welfare service offerings ○ Public and Private Resources: 45 public health centers, 1,522 social welfare facilities, 31 job centers, 36 community mental health centers, Unlimited Care Fund (KRW 56.85 million), MOUs with 49 organizations by the provincial government and 1,556 organizations by city and county offices of Gyeonggi Province.

 5. Who implemented the initiative and what is the size of the population affected by this initiative?
□ Public Sector ○ The Gyeonggi Provincial Government and 31 city and county offices in the province - Some 220 social welfare officers working in the Gyeonggi Provincial Government, 31 city and county Unlimited Care Centers in the province and some 400 private social welfare workers (employees of city and county offices). ○ Gyeonggi Welfare Foundation: A welfare policy research institute funded by the Gyeonggi Provincial Government - The foundation verifies the effectiveness and studies improvement measures of the Unlimited Care Project and Unlimited Care Centers. ○ Community public facilities and agencies - 45 public health centers, 1,522 social welfare facilities, 31 job centers, 36 community mental health centers, 32 community self-sufficiency centers, the Korea Workers’ Compensation and Welfare Service □ Private Sector ○ MOUs with 49 organizations by the provincial government and 1,556 organizations by city and county offices of Gyeonggi Province - The Community Chest of Korea in Gyeonggi Province, Gyeonggi Central Bar Association, Gyeonggi Hospital Association (19 private hospitals), Korean National Police University, National Agricultural Cooperative Federation Gyeonggi Regional Head Office, Catholic Diocese of Suwon, Yongjoosa / Bongsunsa Buddhist temples, The Christian Council of Gyeonggi Province, Gyeonggi Saemaul Center, Korea Pork Producers Association ○ Unlimited Caretakers (volunteer workers) - Some 12,897 caretakers, including the heads of local organizations, members of women’s societies and senior citizens associations, who are well informed about the situations at municipal offices.
 6. How was the strategy implemented and what resources were mobilized?
□ Public Finance: Earmarked by the Gyeonggi Provincial Government working together with 31 city and county offices (KRW 17.6 billion per year) ○ KRW 13 billion in 2013, KRW 15.3 billion in 2012, KRW 15.4 billion in 2011, KRW 16.5 billion in 2010, KRW 43.4 billion in 2009, and KRW 2 billion in 2008 □ Individual Donation: Promoting a culture of sharing across communities through donation and fundraising ○ Amount of Funds: KRW 5.6 billion(fundraising by donating less than KRW 1,000 from monthly salaries of those in religious groups, businesses, officials in provincial offices and workers affiliated with the provincial government, selling old cellular phones) ○ Signing MOUs: Offering services worth KRW 46.2 billion(cash, materials, medical and educational services) through official partnerships with 49 private organizations by the Gyeonggi Provincial Government and 1,556 by city and county offices □ Networking: Mobilizing resources in the public and private sectors ○ Utilizing talent donations or official and unofficial resources across communities through establishing a public and private partnership for joint support by 31 centers and 95 network teams

 7. Who were the stakeholders involved in the design of the initiative and in its implementation?
□ Complete establishment of a welfare brand representing Gyeonggi Province ○ Performance of helping families in crisis overcome hardships: 84,958 households, KRW 92.97 billion(November 2008-September 2013) - KRW 8.9 billion / 9,443 households in 2013, KRW 15.3 billion / 15,105 households in 2012, KRW 14.8 billion / 13,537 households in 2011, KRW 14.7 billion/ 15,816 households in 2010, KRW 38.8 billion / 29,264 households in 2009, KRW 1.6 billion / 1,793 households in 2008 ․ For medical benefits, the total medical expenses required for complete recovery are provided, which serve as “unlimited” care. ※ Case) Mrs. Jeong (47years old) : Jeong, living in Ansan City, Gyeonggi Province, suffered burns all over her body and required three rounds of skin graft surgeries, which cost some KRW 70 million in total. However, the emergency aid and support benefits of the previous governmental support policy only provided KRW 5.2 million, falling far short of covering the medical expenses. Unlimited Care immediately intervened to help Jeong resolve her crisis by providing the remaining KRW 57 million from the project budget and linking Joeng to a psychological therapy center. ○ Case management support by mobilizing resources in the private sector in cities and counties: 43,931households, KRW 37.3 billion - KRW 8.3 billion / 6,016 households in 2013, KRW 10.7 billion / 12,745 households in 2012, KRW 18.3 billion / 25,170 households in 2010-2011 ○ Identifying available resources in the private sector by the provincial government and linking them to families in crisis - Signing MOUs with 49 organizations engaging in the Unlimited Care Project ․ These private organizations have offered services worth KRW 8.9 billion, including medical expense exemptions, education fee support for private institutions, pro bono legal counseling services, microcredit, and food. - KRW 5.6 billion raised for the Unlimited Care Fund ․ Private sector resources have helped establish a multi-layered welfare safety net, offering monthly housing benefits, medical benefits for elderly patients suffering from depression as well as nursing benefits. □ Serving as a benchmark for neighboring countries as well as the Korean central government and local governments ○ Neighboring Countries: Japan’s Shizuoka University of Welfare and Ashiya University in Liaoning Province in China ○ Korean Local Governments: Seoul City, North Jeolla Province, North Gyeongsang Province, Cheongju City, Gunsan City, Yangsan City, Heungseong County ○ Model for governmental policy: The “Hope and Welfare Support Group” operated by the nation’s Ministry of Health and Welfare in 2012 benchmarked the Unlimited Care Centers of Gyeonggi Province.

 8. What were the most successful outputs and why was the initiative effective?
□ Internal Assessment System ○ Upgraded through revamping project guidelines: 11th generation - Since the commencement of the project in November 2008, continuous efforts have been made to improve the system by supplementing and correcting any unfeasible or unnecessary elements, thus resolving blind spots in the welfare policies. ○ Diagnoses by and consulting with experts on the operating system of the Centers, the hub of the project: 64 times - 14 times in 2013, 20 times in 2012, 30 times in 2011 ○ Regular monitoring and improvement measures reported by research institutes specializing in welfare - 2013: 2013 Study on Development Measures of the Unlimited Care Project - 2012: Efficiency Verification Study on the Unlimited Care Centers in Gyeonggi Province - 2011: Evaluation Report on the Unlimited Care Centers - 2010: Monitoring Report on the Unlimited Care Centers of Gyeonggi Province □ External Assessment System ○ Satisfaction Surveys on Beneficiaries - Sample Survey (sample size: 200): 82.36 points in 2012, 81.81 points in 2011, 78.56 points in 2010, based on a 100-point scale ○ Evaluations by the Korean government and prestigious media outlets - Awarded the prize of excellence in the localized project category of the joint government evaluation hosted by the Ministry of Security and Public Administration (2012), and the grand prize in the evaluation of the Hope and Welfare Support Group under the Ministry of Health and Welfare (2012) - Won the grand prize of the Master Brand of Korea for five years (2009-2013), the grand prize of the National Brand Awards for three consecutive years (2011-2013), the grand prize of the Hankyoreh Community Welfare Awards, the achievement award the Korean Association of Medical Social Workers, etc.

 9. What were the main obstacles encountered and how were they overcome?
□ Finding Beneficiaries ○ It was difficult to find those who were suffering through urgent situations but who had limited access to information on eligible support under incumbent laws and policies or who were ineligible due to the criteria set by the Korean government. ○ Community leaders, members of women’s societies and senior citizens’ associations with close relationships with local residents were commissioned as volunteer workers assigned to find families in crisis within their communities. ○ The Unlimited Care Centers initiated outreach services and intensively visited areas with a high concentration of underprivileged and vulnerable populations, thus enhancing the prompt identification and support of families in crisis. □ Mobilizing and Networking Resources ○ Welfare resources were limited in the ability to provide diverse services suitable to each beneficiary. ○ A case manager was designated for each recipient to both mobilize public and private community services. ⇒ Linking families in crisis to available resources in their communities, instead of using additional new budgets ⇒ Mobilizing private resources such as medical cost reductions by private hospitals, support for those with poor credit by the Korea Asset Management Corporation (KAMCO), pro bono legal counseling services by the Central Bar Association, etc. □ Public and Private Partnership ○ Due to lack of experience in public-private partnerships, issues arose such as differences in work processes and conflicts due to different points of view towards the recipients of welfare services. ○ The operation of the Centers was commissioned to private organizations. ○ Case managers in the private sector were hired to enhance networks with private organizations. ○ Institutional opportunities for communication between the public and private sectors were offered through regular case conferences and solution board meetings, engaging both public officials and experts in the private sector.

D. Impact and Sustainability

 10. What were the key benefits resulting from this initiative?
□ The number of national basic livelihood security recipients in Gyeonggi Province, who are in the lowest income bracket, has significantly decreased. ○ The number of recipients decreased by 18,705 from 2007, prior to the project’s inauguration, to the end of 2012. - The ratio of national basic livelihood security recipients to the province’s population decreased by 0.31 percentage points (or 18,705 persons) in the four years since the start of the project in November 2008, from 1.89 percent (or 210,875 persons) at the end of 2007 to 1.57 percent (or 192,170) at the end of 2012. - During the same period, the decrease in the number of recipients in Seoul stood at 6,566 persons (or 0.06 percentage points), thus proving the project’s excellent performance. ․ Seoul City: The number of national basic livelihood security recipients decreased by 6,566 (0.06 percentage points) from 205,876 (2.01 percent of the city’s population) in 2007 to 199,310 (1.95 percent of the city’s population). ○ It has served as a strong third social safety net. - The more comprehensively designed social welfare system in Gyeonggi Province than in other local governments has helped those in the lowest income bracket escape poverty and others from slipping into destitution. ․ Primary safety net: National basic livelihood security system, for those whose household income is below 170 percent of the minimum cost of living; Secondary safety net: Emergency aid and support system, for those whose household income is below 150 percent of the minimum cost of living; Tertiary safety net: Unlimited Care Project ※ The minimum cost of living for a family of three: KRW 1,260,315 per month - It helps families in crisis overcome immediate situations and stand on their own feet through providing customized and intensive case management. □ The number of families in crisis under case management has decreased. ○ Through comprehensive case management, the number of families under management has decreased over 33 percent each year. - Number of families under case management: 6,016 as of September 2013, 12,745 in 2012, 17,460 in 2011 ○ Reasons for reduction - The Unlimited Care Centers have provided customized welfare services since opening in April of 2010. ․ Case managers have identified various needs of welfare recipients and analyzed their root causes through counseling sessions, breaking away from simply providing cash or materials. ․ The root causes of the immediate situations families in crisis face have been resolved through engaging with community residents and establishing partnerships between public and private organizations. - 75 percent increase in the number of public and private welfare institutions and groups in cooperation with and activation of case conferences ․ Cooperation organizations: 8,047 as of September 2013, 7,805 in 2012, 4,604 in 2011 * multiple participations ․ Activation of case conference: 2,068 as of September 2013, 1,805 in 2012, 1,288 in 2011

 11. Did the initiative improve integrity and/or accountability in public service? (If applicable)
□ Offering timely welfare support for families in crisis (Two main causes for acute family crisis: job loss & illness) ○ For crises caused by job loss, timely livelihood, education and housing benefits are provided to prevent families from slipping into destitution while helping in the job search by linking to public and private resources. ○ For crises caused by acute illness, medical benefits are provided until the recipient has fully recovered and medical cost exemption services are executed through networking with public health centers, private hospitals and pharmacies. □ Establishing a stable governance system by utilizing public finance and available resources in the private sector ○ The enactment of the “Unlimited Care Center Establishment and Operation Support Ordinance” has laid the legal framework for reliable policy direction and budgets. ○ Through a welfare network linking individual welfare organizations to communities, cities, counties, and Gyeonggi Province, private sector resources, in operation 24/7, are mobilized for the public good. □ Introducing the networking system of private sector resources across Korea from 2012 ○ The Korean government decided to establish the “Hope and Welfare Support Groups,” similar to the Unlimited Care Centers, in every city and province across the nation from 2012. ○ The interest in the project expressed by the neighboring countries of Japan and China also shows the necessity and possibility of extending a helping hand to neighbors in need through cooperation among public agencies, private organizations and individuals, thus bringing about a culture of sharing.

 12. Were special measures put in place to ensure that the initiative benefits women and girls and improves the situation of the poorest and most vulnerable? (If applicable)
□ The possibility of providing a welfare service customized to the needs of recipients through utilizing community resources has been confirmed. ○ Welfare services have been provided to 44,000 households under case management by establishing a system coordinating and managing welfare resources and the needs of residents across entire communities based on community responsibility. ○ 31 Unlimited Care Centers and 95 Network Teams, the public and private joint system, are in operation to build a reliable and comprehensive delivery system driven by each community. □ A welfare delivery system responding to abrupt changes in social structure has been established. ○ The system provides swift and flexible support to address urgent situations threatening the very survival of individuals and families. ○ It engages with community residents in finding vulnerable populations and providing sustainable care, thus addressing the blind spots of public aid and support and serving as a multi-layered social safety net. ○ It has pushed the boundaries of welfare services by utilizing both public and private welfare systems and funds, thus expanding available resources, instead of only relying on finite public finance. □ A culture of sharing through donation and volunteering services has been created across communities. ○ Engaging with communities has helped voluntarily develop human and material resources and thus created a virtuous circle empowering communities in problem solving and serving as an impetus to transform entire communities. ○ A welfare community across local societies has been created by putting social responsibility and noblesse oblige into practice. □ In the coming years, further steps need to be implemented to enhance the capabilities of local network teams and maintain fair resource allocations and partnerships with various social insurance organizations. ○ The capabilities of social welfare network teams will be further enhanced in alignment with service upgrades to meet diverse welfare needs. ○ The service categories for recipients of elderly, disabled and low-income families will be restructured by service function. ○ Service duplication and omission need to be improved through exchanging information on service recipients.

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Gyeonggi Provincial Government
Institution Type:   Government Agency  
Contact Person:   Jong-Goo Kim
Title:   Deputy Director for the Muhandolbom Team  
Telephone/ Fax:   +82-(0)31-8008-2422
Institution's / Project's Website:  
Address:   Muhandolbom Center, Hyowon-ro 1, Paldal-gu
Postal Code:   442-781
City:   Suwon
State/Province:   Gyeonggi

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