The life of the persons with disabilities in the institutions was a norm for a long time. Because of the change of social values, the isolation of anybody from their family, friends and social circles in general became inadmissible matter. Social services for the persons with disabilities were developed with a purpose – to contribute to the fact that persons with disabilities live normal life like everybody else, to receive the support only in the occasions in which this support as much as necessary as needed and persons with disabilities to have the opportunity to participate in the social life.
The social services for the persons with disabilities differ from the services for other vulnerable groups of persons because they don’t have purpose to overcome the existing problem, for example risk, poverty etc. The disabled person always needs of services; their condition in most cases is irreversible. The persons need of social support during their entire life, but the character of this support changes with the age and the progress or with loss of definite abilities.
Social services in the community for the persons with intellectual disabilities are based of the understanding that these people are like everybody else – healthy, with their own wishes, interests and preferences. The purpose of the social services of that kind is to support the life of the persons with intellectual disabilities by helping them in the area of their deficits. Many public services are placed at disposal of persons with intellectual disabilities – health services, educational services, cultural services. The support of these social services is in addition to them and answers their specific needs.
The development of the social services in the community is linked to constructing the services which:
- Answer to the needs in the way that enables including people with disabilities in the community life;
- Give forms and ways of support, which are part of normal everyday life;
- Offer a response to the diverse needs and the extent to which people with intellectual disabilities need it;
- Take into consideration the opinion of the persons with disabilities.