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Public Centre for Social Welfare

OCMW is a Flemish acronym that in the Belgian context stands for Public Centre for Social Welfare. OCMWs are organised by municipality and their task is to ensure all citizens enjoy a dignifed existence. With this in mind, the OCMW performs community service. The community support is only intended for citizens in need from the municipality in question; those persons who can no longer fall back on other interventions from social security. Depending on the OCMW, this support can take various forms, including subsistence level payment. In addition to financial help, there are other forms of OCMW support: help in kind, for example, meals, clothing, public transport, and so on; medical related help: for example, assistance with medical and pharmaceutical costs, urgent medical help; socio-professional help: for example, help in looking for education or jobs, community shop, and so on; family help: for example, home help, refuge centre, children's home, help with housework, etc.; legal assistance: for example, debt counselling, etc.

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