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According to the Active Ageing Index launched by UNFPA, 7 out of 10 Moldovans over the age of 55 have limited opportunities to fulfil their potential

According to the Active Ageing Index, 7 out of 10 Moldovans aged 55 and over have limited opportunities to fulfil their full potential through employment, participation in social and cultural life and independent living. The study was launched by the UN Population Fund (UNFPA Moldova) on Friday, the 1st of October, during the conference on Active Ageing and Digitalization of older persons, organized for the first time in the Republic of Moldova, on the International Day of Older Persons.

Nigina Abaszada, Resident Representative of UNFPA: “UNFPA, together with its partners, contributes to building intergenerational dialogue, creates links between young and older persons, while supporting the digital inclusion of older persons for more resilient communities.”

The event included discussions about the policies required for active and healthy ageing in the Republic of Moldova, reducing the digital divide between generations and empowering young and older persons.

The event was attended by older and young persons, representatives of the Government and IT companies, civil society, development partners and academia.

 

“The older persons are our parents and grandparents, and we shall invest in them in terms of policies and services. Everything we do in the Government today, awaits us tomorrow. It is never too late to learn, and technology provides new opportunities for inclusion”, said Iurie Turcanu, Deputy Prime Minister for Digitalization.

 

Caroline Tissot, Director of the Swiss Cooperation Office: “Older persons contribute in many ways to the society development and have much to share with young persons. In her opinion, young persons also play an important role in social change and modernization of the country. They contribute through civic involvement and the transfer of knowledge to older persons, for example in the field of technology.”

 

Guests from abroad also shared their own experience regarding involvement of the older persons in active ageing and digitization programs. For example, Vivian Yang, representative of JD.COM, the largest online marketplace in China, spoke about the innovations introduced by the company:

 

“During the pandemic, JD.com China introduced the option for older persons to use our voice-command services so they do not have to press buttons. Besides, we provide them the opportunity to perform basic medical examinations remotely, with the help of a robot”, said Vivian Yang.

 

Tara Kerk from the University College of London provided solutions for overcoming isolation among the older persons, and Biljana Radonjic Ker-Lindsay from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (United Kingdom) related that the EBRD offered support packages for the older persons during the pandemic. Representatives of IT companies also provided solutions for digital inclusion of the older persons:

 

“Nowadays, programmers are creating applications and rushing to sell them. I think that they should be more oriented towards creating inclusive applications for the older persons in terms of font size, color intensity or sound”, said Vitalie Esanu, founder of Privesc.Eu and VoteMe.App

 

During the event, UNFPA Moldova launched the Active Ageing Index – a tool for comparison of the process of active ageing between European countries and for identification of strong and weak points in the ageing evolution in each country. According to the study, the Republic of Moldova, compared to the European Union, requires substantial efforts to create a favorable environment for active ageing and to make progress as Sweden, the Netherlands or Denmark, which are at the top of the ranking.

 

Besides, during the conference, the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection awarded 14 the most active older persons of the Republic of Moldova, winners of the 5th edition of the National Award Contest for the Older Persons under the slogan “For Active life at any Age”.

 

According to statistics, in the Republic of Moldova, only 3 out of 10 older persons aged between 60 and 79 have access to digital technologies, compared to 8 out of 10 people from other younger categories of the population. Forecasts indicate that by 2035, 1 out of 3 nationals will be over 60 years old

 

The event was organized as part of the “Digital skills connect generations” project developed by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), Moldcell Foundation and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, in partnership with HelpAge International Moldova and the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection in 15 rural localities.

 

For details: Nata Sarioglo, communications consultant of UNFPA Moldova, +373 78 835845