To achieve our objectives and respond to our members’ and external stakeholders’ expectations, we rely mainly on complementary types of activities:
- Policy work: implementing AGE policy priorities agreed by the General Assembly
- Project work: seizing relevant opportunities to work further on AGE priorities through EU projects
- Networking: supporting members’ interaction, cooperation and participation in joint projects and initiatives.
This triple approach is considered essential to fulfil AGE mission, i.e. “voice and promote the interests of the 198 million citizens aged 50+ in the European Union and to raise awareness of the issues that concern them most.”
Our policy work
Our main policy activities for the coming years will be to:
- Voice AGE members’ concerns and advance older people’s rights in relevant on-going debates at European Union, United Nations and Council of Europe level through policy monitoring, pro-active contributions, responses to consultations, participation in key meetings and issuing position papers addressed in particular to:
- the European Parliament Committees DROI (Human Rights), LIBE (Civil liberties, Justice and Home Affairs), FEMM ( Women’s rights and Gender Equality), IMCO (Internal Market and Consumers), TRAN (Transport and Toursim) : amendments to EP reports, proposals for own initiative reports, AGE-EP events, support to Intergroup on Ageing and Solidarity between generations); preparation of next European Parliament elections.
- the European Commission (Directorate General Justice, FISMA, CONNECT, EMPL, SANTE, ECFIN, MOVE, etc.): responses to public consultations, regular meetings with key officials, participation in key expert groups set up by the Commission, co-organisation of key events related to older people’s rights.
- the Council: regular contacts with Member States permanent representations to the EU and rotating EU Presidencies, the COHOM (Council working party on Human Rights), the European Union External Action Agency (responsible to EU position in the UN OEWG).
- the EU Fundamental Rights Agency
- the UN Open-ended Working Group on Aging (OEWG) set up for the purpose of strengthening the rights of older people;
- World Health Organisation global headquarters in Geneva and their campaign “Take a Stand against Ageism” officially supported by AGE;
- Council of Europe Secretary General, Commissioner for Human Rights and Conference of International Non-Governmental Organisations (of which AGE is a member).
- ENNHRI (European Network of National Human Rights Institutes), EQUINET and EU non-discrimination networks
- BEUC (European Consumer Organisation)
- European Passengers Federation.
- Voice AGE members’ concerns and advance older people’s rights in relevant on-going debates on EU socio-economic policies that have an impact on older persons through policy monitoring, pro-active contributions, responses to consultations, participation in key meetings and issuing position papers dealing in particular with the implementation of the European Semester (EU macroeconomic policy framework) and the UN Madrid International Plan of Action on Aging) and addressed to:
- The European Commission: DG EMPL (EU Pillar of social rights, employment policies, pensions reforms, funding of long-term care, European Semester); DG ECFIN (impact of ageing on public spending);
- The Council: Social Protection Committee, and its working group on Age
- The relevant European Parliament Committees: EMPL (Employment and Social Affairs), ECON (Economic and Monetary Affairs), FEMM (Gender equality)
- UN-Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE)
- WHO Global strategy and action plan on ageing and health
- Social Platform
- European Anti-Poverty Network.
- Voice AGE members’ concerns and advance older people’s rights in on-going debates on age-friendly environments in Europe through pro-active contributions supporting the concept of design-for-all, standardization, mobility, accessibility, new technologies, senior tourism, responses to relevant consultations, participation in key meetings and expert groups, issuing position papers and cooperating in particular with:
- The European Covenant on Demographic Change
- The European Commission: DG JUST (consumers’ rights), DG CONNECT (EU Partnership on Active and Healthy Ageing and EU Silver Economy; e-Health Week); DG EMPL (European Accessibility Act); DG MOVE (accessibility of all transport modes), DG SANTE (EU health policy forum)
- European Parliament Committees: ENVI (Environment, Public Health and Food Safety), ITRE (Industry, Research, Energy), EMPL (Employment and Social Affairs), IMCO (Internal Market and Consumers), TRAN (Transport and Tourism), Intergroup on Ageing and Solidarity between Generations
- CEN-CENELEC (European standardisation organisations) and ANEC (European Consumers’ voice in standardisation)
- WHO Global Network on Age-Friendly Cities and Communities.
- Campaign to mobilise older people to play an active role in the next European Parliament elections in order to:
- Ensure that older people’s views are taken on board in the political groups’ manifestos
- Gather support for the re-establishment of the EP Intergroup on Ageing and Solidarity between Generations
Our project work
Being the largest network representing older people in the EU, AGE is often asked to join EU projects to bring the perspective of our members. We join European projects where our platform can add value, can bring the viewpoint of older people in the discussion and can support the genuine implementation of the principle of user involvement.
The role of AGE in projects varies widely, from leading coordinator to member of the Advisory Board or associated partner, but our objective in all is to voice older people’s perspectives, to effectively involve end-users at all stages, and to ensure the main ethical and legal issues are correctly addressed.
AGE involvement in projects as a partner can be:
- as a member of the Advisory Board where AGE experts are called to provide expertise and direction to a project, to suggest improvements, to assess the evolution of some actions (e.g. the content of deliverables, the implementation of a pilot site, the accessibility of the project...), to provide the peer review of documents, to wider disseminate the project’s outcomes, as well as to discuss the project’s exploitation and sustainability plans.
- as participant in User Fora, where they meet experts, users, stakeholders and end-users (other older people and/or people with disabilities) for discussions with researchers, policy makers and decision-makers, designers and developers.
- through providing feedback on e.g. deliverables and other documents, project brochures, leaflets, and dissemination materials, where it is important to get the opinion and suggestions from “fresh” and experienced eyes.
- through disseminating the projects’ outcomes at European level, by presenting them in relevant events (e.g. Institutional conference, public workshops and seminars), by writing articles in our monthly newsletter and dedicated newsflashes, besides working to present projects’ results to organisations of older people, their broader networks, and regional, national and European stakeholders.
AGE is moreover committed to bridge projects and policies activities, especially at European level. AGE indeed feeds the projects’ activities, e.g. by providing insights from the national and European policy perspectives, by presenting inputs, best practices and feedback coming from its experts and members, by highlighting interesting events even at national and regional level, by sending information regarding policy developments and/or raising concerns. In such a way, AGE works for narrowing the gap between the policy areas, the projects and research activities.
AGE’s activities in research projects are fully financed by EU programmes 7th Framework Programme, Horizon 2020, ERASMUS+, etc.
Our networking work
Opportunities to support networking between our members are provided during AGE statutory meetings (Council and General Assembly, Annual Conference) as well as through the Task Forces.
The Secretariat informs members of EU calls for proposals which might interest them and provides support to members searching for partners in other countries to work on a common project or looking for examples of good practice from other countries.
To increase members’ opportunities to work together on a common work priority, in the framework of this Strategy, AGE will seek to identify groups of members interested in applying together for EU funding and will pro-actively support them in the preparation of their project application. AGE’s involvement in such project will be subject to the approval of the Council and, if needed, AGE co-funding needs will be covered by those members who will be involved in the networking project.