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A solidarity-based, volunteer, end-of-life community service

An "end-of-life" service community, based on volunteers who would contribute first, then get support for themselves or their families

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Who is your idea designed for and how does it reimagine the end-of-life experience?

People who have experienced how difficult it is to support relatives or friends in their last days, and who got support from professionals or volunteers, are often willing to help in return. Among them, those people who have time - say, when retiring and still in good health, are the right people to start this community based on mutual solidarity.

End-of-life support is costly, difficult to find very often, and not easy to organize for relatives when struck by the illness of a parent. It has to be organized at a community level, involving different categories of non-medical professionals (meaning home health aids, house personnel, emotional supports, etc.). It has to be mutualized (not always in a same place like a hospice, but at least as a proximity network).

In this end-of-life support, many tasks can be performed without heavy specialization or expert competences - just as favors done to the community. One could imagine measuring the contribution of each volunteering individual to this community, to give him access in return, when needed, for himself or persons of his choice, to the same services. Having given X hours helping families, watching over their parents, helping with cooking, comforting sick people, etc., one could haver the equivalent of an "account" of available hours of services - that one would be able to use years after when needing help.

Such exchange of free services would certainly lower the non-medical costs during end-of-life period ) thanks to deferred solidarity.

What skills, input or guidance from the OpenIDEO community would be most helpful in building out or refining your idea?

This is about designing a whole system that is based on :
- community engagement
- trust
- benefits measurement
- and the sustainability of this initiative through time.
This is a real challenge where returns on experience are needed to define a realistic path a success ! Any benchmarks in terms of business models, development dynamics, etc. are welcome.

Tell us about your work experience:

I am a consultant in Innovation & Strategy. However this end-of-life relates to a very personal experience that I am willing to transform into something more helpful and concrete now.

This idea emerged from

  • An Individual

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