Centre espoir et joie ASBL

Changeons la société, pas les individus

The day centre

Welcoming 34 adults with severe to profound I.D the day centre Espoir et Joie is composed of an educative and therapeutic team with different professionals among which lie physiotherapists, speech therapists, educators, psychologists, nurse, social worker, and ergotherapists.

The needs of the person are evaluated in a multidisciplinary way, by means of different tools, specific to each one of the professionals. Caretaking objectives are then emerged from a common agreement and are conveyed in the Individualised Service Plan of the person. The family is also invited to this agreement and can convey their wishes concerning the caretaking of their relative.

The relatives are also invited when there are celebrations, birthdays or any other event that gives rhythm to the lives of the residents at the centre (Christmas market, musical show, Special Olympics, etc).


During the day, the day centre organises various activities where every adult of the Institution are enrolled to.

We divide our participants into two groups:

Residents from the “young” population, we have defined six areas of stimulation on which the activities are based upon:

Conceptual abilities:

  • The “sensory” area concerns the different stimulations with a sensory aspect: olfaction, taste, hearing, view and touch are therefore exploited.
  • The “cognitive” area corresponds to the stimulation that needs cognitive resources (memory, attention, etc) of the residents. Keeping school knowledge is primordial (written expression, verbal and digital writing). Activities such as “games”, “newspaper”, etc are in this area.
  • The area of “expression” involves the activities that stimulate the expression of oneself, of the welcomed persona and the communication of their wants and needs on a expressive mode that it specific to themselves. We can distinguish two types of expression activities:
    • Of “cognitive” nature, that involves a number of schools and kindergartens capabilities as verbal or written skills. Different supports of alternative communication are proposed in the workshops in order to encourage and develop a communication mode that is adapted to each adult. The “sesame” gestual language and the visual support are made of pictograms and/or pictures.
    • Of “creative” nature, based on original forms of expression as the corporal expression, free drawing technique, etc. Music and painting are used in order to let the adults communicate their emotional state of the moment.

Social abilities:

  • This is the social area. It corresponds to the workshops that have as aim to develop and maintain the adequate social behavior and to encourage encounters with the "outside world". Some activities linked to community life and their aim Is to develop solidarity and mutual aid between themselves.

Practical abilities:

  • The “motor” area concerns the activities whose aim is to maintain the physical condition and functional abilities of the adults welcomed by making exercises either in the sports room or in a running track.
  • The“ autonomous” area aims to develop and/or maintain the levels of autonomy of each adult by the realization of different activities of their daily life (grooming, eating, drinking, etc).

A group of elders

This group that is primarily in the residential centre, the activities that have been proposed to them have been thought about in order to find equilibrium between over-stimulating and under-stimulating, while respecting the slowest rhythm of the elderly person and his health and fatigue.

These occupations will now hinge around four three themes:

  1. Life Story: restitution of the life story of the persons, of their roots, origins through different tools (timeline, souvenir in forms of pictures, family tree, cookbook, old music, etc.) is particularly important. This "repossession" of their own story lets the adult keep a link, a common thread that is a route through their life. The proposed tools allow to stimulate the person’s memory, the spatio-temporal structuration, and the recognition of their relatives. Restore the I.D person’s history, it’s acknowledging the other as being one, possessing his/her own identity and his/her own life path. It is about giving humanity and dignity to the person, understanding him/her better.
  2. Sensoriality: In literature as well as in our daily life, there is stimulation of our sensorial sphere (eg snoezelen experience) that has positive impacts on persons with a disability. Important sensorial deficits can be added to the disability of the persons we welcome. With age, these sensory deficits can be emphasized. Sensory stimulation allows an amelioration of their mood, agressivity, communication, anxiety, self-harming behavior, etc.
  3. Autonomy, expression and social integration occupations: : are part of their daily activities.
    • For the autonomy occupations, it’s about keeping and stimulating the activities acquired by the person during his/her life. These skills are related to the daily acts (washing themselves, clean their room, household task such as emptying the dishwasher, folding their clothes, setting up the table, etc.)
    • During the expression activities, the adults are encourages to express themselves in different ways: this can be expressing their emotions through music, by singing or by using different instruments. For this to be, a music therapy project has been put in place with a volunteer music therapist. Some adults from the "Elders" also participate to the representations put in place during different occasions.
    • During the social integration activities, the adults are brought to maintain the social network that they have been able to create in the past. Indeed, getting older is associated with the decrease in mobility; this can lead to less exterior activities and a certain social isolation. To compensate, outside activities are encouraged to the maximum. To ensure that these supports are functional and most suitable possible, these require to take place in the areas of life frequented by the "Elders". This means that the adults profit from a care taking in the residential centre (eg: snoezelen bath are given in the bathroom, autonomy occupations are followed in the residential centre, etc).

The day centre guarantees a medical and paramedical follow-up of all its adults whether they are from the day centre or the residential centre. At a medical level, the physical wellbeing of the person has to be put first, in front of any other need. The physical health, the absence of suffering cause by the disease has to be the first objective.
If requested by the family we organize either the visit of the specialists or the whole care. In this way, for example the elderly of over 50 years old in the institution deserve a particular attention. Specific disorders can emerge because of their age:

    • Organic Disorders: cardio-vascular disorders, muscular and skeletal disorders, respiratory infections, digestive disorders, visions and hearing disorders, mobility disorders, etc.
    • Cognitive Disorders: : decline of metacognitive aptitudes like attention, memory, perception, etc.
    • Psychopathological disorders: psychological and behavioral disorders (inward-looking and isolation, depression, delirium, agressivity, hyperactivity, etc), psychosis of old age (delusional and/or hallucinatory conditions).

These problems as a whole are followed by a decrease in the autonomy and spatio-temporal orientation disruptions that need to be taken care of more importantly and individually. This is why, besides the daily occupations, paramedical care taking is plannified for each adult several times a week. This type of caretaking is particularly reinforced for the elderly group because we believe the elderly needs extra health care. It can be taking care of the adults in the areas of speech therapy, kinesiotherapy or ergotherapy.