Live longer, live better: International Forum on Older Persons

Helpage Espana and the Government of Navarra in collaboration with the Foundation Obra Social La Caixa hosted on 29th September in Pamplona (Spain) the International Forum on Older Persons “Living longer, living better”. The objectives of the forum was to train, raise awareness and sensitize the public and the media about the rights of older persons and their current situation around the world, to contribute to the empowerment of the older population and of the entities involved in the ageing sector, and to promote a culture of respect and dignity for older people. The agenda of the meeting had a special focus on aspects of equality, participation, dignified treatment and human rights.

Living_longer_living better_Pamplona_forum_Sept2017 Speakers included Alexandre Kalache, a well-known expert on ageing and former director of the World Program on Aging of the World Health Organization, who was the driving force behind the development of the Active Ageing Framework. Mr. Kalache talked about the various contributions of older people in society but also the numerous ways in which they are discriminated and excluded and urged for more attention to their human rights. Ms. Ellen Graham, Coordinator of the Global Alliance for the Rights of Older People (GAROP) talked about the NGO campaign for a UN convention on the rights of older persons and how older people’s organisations can get involved. Nena Georgantzi, Human Rights Officer of AGE Platform Europe talked about the barriers that older people face in becoming active agents in their communities and discussed how a human rights approach to older age can empower older people, help recognize their contribution to society and enhance their participation. She also referred to existing processes and instruments, which aim to promote the rights of older people but also to various tools that AGE has developed to help older people take a more active role in society, such as the online Self Advocacy Handbook and the Active Senior Citizens for Europe: A Guide to the EU.

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