Population aging is one of humanity_s greatest
one of our greatest challenges. As we enter the 21st century, global aging will cause increased social and economic demands around the world.
, older people are generally ignored as a resource when in fact they are an important resource for the structure of our societies. The World Health Organization argues that countries can afford aging if governments, international organizations and civil society implement “active aging” policies and programs that improve the health, participation and safety of older citizens. The time to plan and act is now. In every country, and especially in developing countries, measures to help older people stay healthy and active are a necessity, not a luxury.
The policies and programs we refer to above should be based on the rights, needs, preferences and skills of older people. They should
include a life course perspective that recognizes the important influence of life experiences on the way individuals age.
To conclude providing opportunities for the elderly to remain in the workforce longer as well as engage in volunteering, care, and artistic activities can provide both social and economic benefits and relieve some of the fiscal pressures related to aging societies.
, work activities for the elderly do not automatically translate into social welfare gains. Policies should be arranged in a way that recognizes the dignity and autonomy of older individuals as opposed to providing them with meaningless or degrading tasks merely to keep them occupied.
to furnishing meaningful and rewarding opportunities, activities should be adapted to the physical and mental aptness of older individuals. And while paid and unpaid work activities are beneficial to society and the elderly, allowing for choice and autonomy is key.
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