Two New Country Liaisons Join Our Network
Dr. Ana Krajnc, Slovenia
Dr. Ana Krajnc, Professor of Andragogy at the University of Ljubljana, is our new liaison for Slovenia. She has a global outlook cultivated at leading universities around the world – Geneva, Florence, Toronto, Ulm, San Francisco, and Oxford and is a tireless researcher in andragogy and the social sciences. She writes prolifically and plays a very active part as President (since 2006) of the Slovene Third Age University network she co-founded (1985). Read more.
Mr. Njuakom Nchii Francis, Cameroon
Talking to Francis “everyone calls me Francis” is energizing. He is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of CDVTA – Community Development Volunteers for Technical Assistance, Cameroon’s leading organization in providing assistance and support to older people. When CDVTA organizes a gathering literally thousands turn up. He is the Country Contact for the Commonwealth Association for the Ageing – Commonage and Board Member of the IFA – International Federation of Aging. He works in close contact with HelpAge and is part of the Alumni of the International Institute on Ageing. Read more.
CDVTA – Building a Society Where Elders Live Fulfilled Lives
CDVTA is Cameroon’s leading age-care organization, with over 18 years’ successful evidence-based senior-driven, integrated home-based care best practices, through sustainable, replicable community initiatives, promoting advocacy, rights, elder-friendly communities, social inclusion, welfare, work opportunities, and child education for intergenerational linkages and shared learning. See their remarkable achievements here.
When CDVTA holds a convention in north-west Cameroon, 5,000 people and more flock to the event. The 6th regional convention at Bolo in July focused on “strengthening advocacy, promoting elderly rights.”
Sponsored by All We Can Give
The International Positive Aging Conference
Capital Hilton Hotel
August 25-27, 2016
The 8th International Conference on Positive Aging (PAC) will be held in Washington, DC, August 25-27, 2016, hosted by the Society of Certified Senior Advisors (CSA) and supported (as in the past) by Fielding Graduate University and its Creative Longevity and Wisdom Program.
Keynotes by Ashton Applewhite, This Chair Rocks, on how Ageism warps our view of long life and James Firman, CEO of the National Council on Aging, detailing actionable strategies to navigate longer lives.
The program is original and varied and includes Bruce Frankel’s Movement Choir and the Wiser Together Café gathering of 20 olders and 20 youngers exploring partnering across generations for our common future.
The Pass It On Network will be very active:
Happy Hour Reception: 5-7 pm on Thursday, August 25
Leadership Worldwide for Positive Active Aging: 11-12 noon on Friday, August 26 – with Pass It On community members: Kathie NeuOrgan (Halifax, Canada), Dieter Zwicky (Switzerland), Elizabeth Isele (USA), Jan Hively (USA), and Moira Allan (France)
Building Global and Digital Communities for Positive Aging: 3:45 pm on Sunday, August 28 – with Kari Henley, Bruce Frankel, Brain Pratt, Doug Fitzgerald, Jan Hively, and Moira Allan
Wiser Together Café – Partnering Across Generations for our Common Future: 2:00 pm – 4:15 pm on Friday, August 26 – with Juanita Brown, David Shaw and Moira Allan
Filmmakers are creating a new documentary about positive aging and will be interviewing conference attendees and shooting at the Wiser Together Café. We need help recruiting youngers (ages 18-35) as participants …
International Longevity Center – UK
Where now for ageing?
Conference on November 9, 2016 in London
The Pass It On Network’s UK person on the spot, Dr Vera Mensinga, will be reporting back to the community.
The UK is in a period of acute economic, social and political uncertainty.
Yet the need for action on demographic change remains urgent. There remain too many unanswered questions facing policymakers today, including:
- How can economic growth be maximized in an ageing society?
- How can we strengthen the social contract between old and young?
- How can we build enough houses for the young and the old?
Pass It On Network’s life cycle approach emphasizes the importance of intergenerational activities
‘Aina, Ho’omana and Kupuna* – Rediscovering Traditional Practices
Hawaii is hosting the Peace Child International World Youth Congress 2017 – Reconnecting to our Ancestral Roots to Build Sustainable Communities in June/July
Our ancestral roots nourish the connections within and around us – to our past, our land (‘aina), and even to our greater purpose in life. Throughout Hawaii today, young people are strengthening these connections, creating a cultural renaissance by rediscovering the knowledge and traditional practices of their elders (kupuna). Their experiences will be shared at the congress. The major issue to be addressed: “How can young leaders help the United Nations and its member states achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030?”
Meeting in Malta
By Moira Allan
The number of people trained to meet the needs of the steadily aging population worldwide – 20% of the global population by 2050 – is alarmingly and totally inadequate across the full spectrum from gerontologists to informal caregivers. Just one fact – there are only 6,000 geriatricians for 300 million people in the USA. If that’s the situation for a developed country, once can just imagine how much worse it is in the developing world.
This is the abysmal gap that the UN set out to fill through its Resolution 37/51 to promote training, research and information exchanges to provide an international basis for social policies and action on aging. Resolution moved to action when, in 1987, the United Nations signed an official agreement with the Government of Malta to establish the International Institute on Ageing (INIA) as an autonomous body under the auspices of the United Nations.
In an interview, Dr. Marvin Formosa, Director of the International Institute on Ageing (INIA), explained why Malta was chosen for this new institute. A major reason was because nearly 50 years’ ago, farsighted Malta was the first nation to alert the United Nations to need for an action plan for ageing.
Dr. Formosa, a prolific writer and world renowned for his research in the field of ageing, is a senior lecturer and coordinator of the Gerontology Unit, Faculty for Social Wellbeing, University of Malta. His key interests are critical gerontology, sociology of later life, social class dynamics, and educational gerontology. He is a prolific researcher and writer. His latest book “Ageing and Later Life in Malta: Issues, Policies and Future Trends” gives a remarkable world perspective on the whole issue.
The overall mandate of INIA is to empower low-income countries to cope with the challenges of the consequences of mass longevity in the next decades by building capacity for them to be able to educate and train their own personnel to formulate and implement their own appropriate policies.
To date, INIA has trained more than 2,000 candidates from 141 countries at the Institute in Valletta, the historic capital of Malta.
In 1995 « in-situ » programs were created as an additional avenue and course was held in Cape Town South Africa. These ‘in-situ’ training programs have since increased beyond expectation. To date, 96 have been conducted in 27 developing countries for more than 3,000 participants. To find out more about training opportunities, visit the International Institute on Ageing.
News from the Network
Our Pass It On Country Liaison for South Africa, Lynda Smith, is now on the driving committee of the Healthy Aging Society of Africa – HASOA – a legacy of the second World Congress for Healthy Aging held in South Africa in July 2015 (22 countries/90 speakers). In fact, HASOA is the crystallization of the conference organizing committee. Inspired by the conference success, new objectives are to collaborate with all associations working with aging in South Africa and to network into the African continent.
Lynda is President of Refirement Network, a social enterprise engaging older skilled workers to work with South Africa’s youth to find inter-generational solutions to skills building and employment.
An inspiring message…
Calling all Baby Boomers: It’s time to change the world again
Barbara Raynor, after 6 years as Chief Executive of BLCiH in Denver, Colorado, believes “we are the ones” to do it:
“We have been inspired each day by the selfless contributions of our dozens of volunteers and AmeriCorps Encore Members, who have devoted a total of more than 175,000 hours of their time–which is valued by the Independent Sector at more than $4.6 MILLION! They, along with our team of incredibly patient and tenacious certified health coverage guides, have touched the lives of nearly 80,000 individuals and families across Metro Denver in so many important–and sometimes even life-saving–ways.
“WE are that promise. Change does not come from grand, sweeping gestures, new legislation or policies, or Supreme Court decisions (although they can certainly help pave the way). Rather, meaningful, lasting change comes from how we treat each other as human beings. It comes from lending an ear, a shoulder, and a hand to someone in-need. It comes from looking into a person’s eyes-and seeing what’s in their heart. It comes from making a commitment to doing whatever we can to leaving this world better than we found it–day in and day out. And it comes from never giving up hope. Never, Never, NEVER.”
Groundbreaking Public-Private Partnership
Will Improve Elder Caregiving and Create Jobs
Caregiving and Aging Reimagined Across Europe (CARE) is the name of an innovative public-private initiative tackling aging realities. Data shows that by 2060, the need for long-term care among Europe’s 80+ population alone is expected to triple. “We are facing a 21st century demographic reality for which we are not yet prepared,” says Michael W. Hodin, CEO of Global Coalition on Aging that has partnered with the EU’s European Institute of Innovation & Technology (EIT) Health and a consortium of partners. Together they have launched the CARE initiative, to share best practices and improve the quality of elder caregiving in Europe. Read more.
Everyone touch one…
What Loneliness Is Doing to Your Heart: As social creatures, we suffer when cut off from one another. Read what 25 scientific studies show us and take action. If everyone were to touch just one other…
Environment – see the lily pond effect
View Dr. Edgar Mitchell’s Apollo 14 astronaut’s recent video on sustainability and a strategy to achieve a more optimal future of earth and all its inhabitants. Hear what the young ones are saying. See what you can do.
Read here for more information about Dr. Edgar Mitchell (1930-2016).
Revisit this new resource! Encore Talent Works toolkit, the go-to digital guide to recruiting and hiring experienced talent.
New Liaison to Our Network
Cullen T. Hayashida, Ph.D.
Senior Advisor – St. Francis Healthcare System of Hawaii and Kupuna Monitoring Systems (Hawaii)
Dr. Hayashida is the Founder and former Director of the Kupuna (Elder) Education Center at Hawaii’s Kapi‘olani Community College, where he developed curricula for both family caregivers and healthcare professionals. Read more.
An essential tool for everyone interested in economic security
The Encore Talent Works toolkit, a new, dynamic online resource, makes the value of encore talent plain. The toolkit helps nonprofit leaders, hiring managers and volunteer managers recognize and harness the power of encore talent, with practical how-to information, expert resources and success stories.
Created by Encore.org and Encore Network leaders throughout the U.S., the toolkit represents a collaboration grounded in experience and real-world best practices, offering insights on the unique attributes of encore-stage adults, as well as sections about transferable skills, getting started, and recruiting skilled volunteers and employees. Project lead and Encore.org Director of Network Expansion, Betsy Werley said, “We’re excited to launch the first how-to resource that showcases the value of encore talent, and positions nonprofits to benefit from their experience, passion and energy.”
An interactive, searchable map of U.S. encore programs complements the toolkit, connecting organizations with local resources and helping encore-seekers find opportunities.
Questions? Comments? Contact Betsy Werley for more information or an interview.
Implementation is what we need now – Dirk Jarré, President of EURAG
Moira Allan reporting from Ljubljana, capital of Slovenia.
EURAG, the Pass It On Network’s European regional partner’s biennial council meeting was hosted in Ljubljana by its long standing founder member ZDUS, the Slovenian federation of pensioners’ associations. ZDUS, a much respected umbrella organization of 503 local associations and clubs with a combined membership of 233,000 (11% of the total population) celebrates its 70th anniversary this year, and national and local government joined in and marked their respect. Marjan Sedmak, president of AGE Platform Europe, was present both as city councillor of Ljubljana and as president of Age Platform Europe. Read more…
IAUTA – 40 years’ of spreading lifelong learning worldwide
By Moira Allan
International Association of Universities of the Third Age
Anniversary Conference in Reims, France
What a privilege to be invited to attend the 40th anniversary international conference and listen to speaker after speaker from 20 countries around the world including Australia, Senegal, Colombia, Brazil, Sweden and China, talk of the dynamic growth of lifelong learning.
In many ways, the Pass It On Network, is grateful to the U3A. Thanks to member Mr. Hans-Kristjan Gudmundsson in Iceland, we were introduced to Mr. Amoorgum Parsuramen, who is very active in this international body and who became our liaison. In less than two years he has created 22 U3A centers on his Indian Ocean home island of Mauritius, a country that has been top of the African region in the Help Age Global Index for the past two years.
In all, 22 countries attended and each related the growth of the U3A associations in their respective countries – a wonderful historical panorama of what has been achieved since the Danish Lutheran pastor Grundtvig (1788-1840) introduced the first Open Schools for lifelong learning. And a wonderful tribute to Professor Pierre Vellas who created the first U3A in Toulouse, France, in 1973, and to his son, Prof. François Vellas who is the president today.
The most staggering example of growth came from China. In 1986 there was one U3A with 587 students; by 2015, and with full government support, there were 60 867 elderly universities with 7 643 100 students. Of these, 18 universities had more than 10 000 students, the largest being the Tianjin University for the elderly.
Most countries do not receive any financial support and are ingenious in finding ways and means of growing their work.
Mr. Amoorgum Parsuramen, Pass It On’s liaison in Mauritius, with Iza Kato (left) and Malgorzata Stanowska (right) from 3UA in Lublin, Poland, and Moira Allan, Pass It On’s co-founder and international coordinator at the 40th anniversary of the U3A in Reims. Iza and Malgorzata are working with Hans-Kristjan Gudmundsson in Iceland on the European Union project BALL – Be Active through Lifelong Learning.
Some of our new friends from around the world:
Stepping into a TV Career at 75
TV producer is the new skill, Agnes Mikkelsen, our Canadian liaison for British Colombia has just added to her already rich and varied CV that has strong currents of entrepreneurship and service running through every stage. She sees life as a continuous cycle of growth, and growing into an Elder as a privilege that allows us to give forward.
Asked how she found herself to be enrolled in a TV producer’s course just before her 75th birthday, she said the spark came from the Pass It On Network. “I read about the senior TV team that had been trained at the Tuymazy TC Center in Bashkortostan, Russia, and thought that was wonderful.
“Then, as I had agreed to be the liaison for the network in BC, I was trying to make sense of all the senior organizations in the Chilliwack area. There were so many and they didn’t seem to know about each other and I thought that there was a lot of energy being wasted. What to do about it? Of course, communication had to be a big part of the answer – but how? So, inspired by the Russian example, and encouraged by my niece, I made an appointment at Shaw TV and was very agreeably surprised to find myself in conversation with people who understood about building community.”
“Shaw, I learned, has a policy of training members of the community to produce their own TV shows for their community channel. They have been doing this valuable work for eight years. When I walked out of the office, it was with a curriculum and a date for my first lesson! I was really excited.
“I loved the training. It was an intensive course of 8 full days over 8 weeks. I learned how to operate a camera and so much more; all about lighting, for example, and then there was a whole day on microphones before we went onto how to structure a program, the art of interviewing and the whole issue of editing.
“Part of the deal was that we had to pay back with 8 weeks of service for a community project.
“I shot my first program in May. It was about the Chilliwack Senior Consultants, a remarkable peer-to-peer program that trains seniors to be consultants to their peers. The program is run by a rather remarkable young lady who is working very hard for the seniors of Chilliwack.
“We are waiting for camera time for our next available filmings.” said Agnes.
As soon as it becomes available, we’ll be sharing Agnes’ first program with you.
Ljubljana City Senior Centers
Strong antidote to isolation: participation and meeting
“The choice for seniors shouldn’t be between isolation and institutionalisation,” said Mr. Marjan Sedmak, city counselor of Ljublajana and President of Age Platform, in an interview with the Pass It On Network.
“Twelve years ago there was nowhere in Ljubljana for seniors to get together on a regular basis and develop their skills and activities. Today we have just opened our 7th senior center, and we aim to have one in each of our 17 territorial units within the next few years.
“The city supplies the infrastructure – the kitchen is vital for building community – and a small administrative staff. Seniors are part and parcel of the programming of activities and often create new ones. For example, if someone wants to find out how to transfer photos from a telephone or tablet and can find 5 other people interested in the same topic, we’ll co create the activity with the group.
“Activities are varied and run from the physical – yoga, tai chi, hiking – to languages – the romance languages and modern Greek are very popular – personal development, and creative activities – painting, drawing, handwork. “We are learning and creating all the time,” he said.
Nobody asked her, she just did it
I met Tania Gobec while strolling among stands at a Water Week celebration along the banks of the Ljubljanica River in Ljubljana, winner of Europe’s Green City award for the second time running. Tania is a farmer and has been all her life. She was upset about the fact that city children don’t know where flour comes from. So she decided to show them. She set up a simple, portable see-touch-crush-grind-eat demonstration and started taking it to different ecology events. She has a simple bowl of wheat, invites children take a handful, feel it, then stone crush and grind it. She then mixes the resulting flour into a dough, cooks it on the spot, fills the pancakes with her own homemade apple-quince jam and the children eat the result and leave licking their fingers and mulling over a new understanding of how the world works.
Nobody asked her to do this; she took the initiative. Today she’s built quite a reputation for herself and schools invite her to involve their students in her live demonstrations. She’s even earning some money from initiative.