Monday, January 16, 2012

The Value of Solidarity between Generations

2012 is the "European Year of Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations". A chance for all of us to reflect on how Europeans are living longer and staying healthier than ever before, and to realise the opportunities that represents.
Active ageing can give the baby-boom generation and tomorrow's older adults the opportunity to:
  • stay in the workforce and share their experience
  • keep playing an active role in society
  • live as healthy and fulfilling lives as possible.

It is also key to maintaining solidarity between generations in societies with rapidly increasing numbers of older people.

"The challenge for politicians and stakeholders will be to improve opportunities for active ageing in general and for living independently, acting in areas as diverse as employment, health care, social services, adult learning, volunteering, housing, IT services or transport.
The European Year seeks to raise awareness of the issues and the best ways of dealing with them. But most of all it seeks to encourage all policymakers and stakeholders to set themselves goals and take action to meet them. 2012 should go beyond debating; it should start bringing tangible results."

But if you are worried about growing older, or about your place in society when you're 60, 70 or 80, please watch and listen Jane Fonda (74 years old) at TEDxWomen.

Jane Fonda has had three extraordinary careers: an Oscar-winning actor, author, producer, a prominent activist and a best-selling fitness guru.

"Within this generation, an extra 30 years have been added to our life expectancy and these years aren’t just a footnote or a pathology." 

At TEDxWomen, Jane Fonda asks how we can think about this new phase of our lives. Watch the video below:

Like she said: Age has potential. So, what we can do? How to use it?

There is a lot to life after 60 - and society is coming increasingly to appreciate the contribution older people can make. That’s what active ageing is about - getting more out of life as you grow older, not less, whether at work, at home or in the community.

So, as teachers, stay in the workforce and share your expertise with  others. Keep playing an active role in society by teaching in schools, or tutoring and e-tutoring for lilfelong learners (younger school teachers), even practising adult learning by volunteering.

Active ageing is also a determining factor for maintaining solidarity between generations in society. Senior citizens have much to offer younger generations – and the other way round.

In my post Olive: some values in school curriculuim I could share with you a disruptive educational resource. I used a film to talk about solidariity. 

Olive, a little girl that gone into the lives of three people - an old lonely woman, a foreigner having a hard time acclimating in the United States,and an obese man - and transformed their lives without saying a word.

It is important to introduce s
olidarity between generations. It was a awesome experience to all.

Another post, Multi-tasking? Not only for digital natives! You watched how senior citizens are multi-tasking and active as younger people.

The "2012 European Year of Active Ageing and the Solidarity Between Generations" will serve  for disseminating good practices and important values. Solidarity, participation in society are among them.

A big number of younger citizens are being volunteering to support senior citizens, in areas as diverse as employment, health care, social services, adult learning, volunteering, IT skills.

Active ageing is not just about employment. Around one quarter of Europeans (including those over 55) say they are also engaged in voluntary work. 

"Being volunteer based, volunteer led and representing millions of citizens engaged in voluntary activities every day."

All the European countries are preparing several initiatives. Please, find the initiatives in your country here

Do you have some ideas and suggestions for the "European Year Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations"? Please, go on the website.

I wish you a fulfilling, healthy and active year 2012! 


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The Value of Solidarity between Generations by G-Souto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.


European Year of Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations

EU - graphic guide lines

European Youth Forum | Facebook

TEDx | Jane Fonda: Life 3th act


  1. Muitos parabéns pela nomeação ao mais alto nível!

  2. Muito obrigada MRC ! Uma nomeação sem dúvida inesperada... mas saborosa.