A project funded by the European Union to promote human rights for elderly through combating ageism and discrimination, officially kicked off with a conference organised in Neum in April 2019.
The conference gathered experts and policy makers from Austria, Croatia, Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina to jointly assess the current situation and together move forward in increasing the ability and accountability of institutions responsible for respecting and protecting human rights of elderly.
During the conference, the representatives from project locations, Sarajevo municipalities Novo Sarajevo, Centar and Stari Grad, and from Mostar, Banja Luka and Brcko District BiH, demonstrated readiness to detect deficiencies and empower social and institutional capacities to recognize and confront ageism, in line with the priorities defined by the Federation of BiH and Republika Srpska strategic priorities for improvement of the position of elderly.
The project ‘Action Against Ageism’ aims at supporting competent institutions and empowering elderly to recognize available forms of support, but also to sensitize public about different stages of ageism. The project in particular promotes and supports the active participation of elderly people in the local community life and researches and publicly promotes anti-discriminatory media approach and social responsibility to ensure a social environment that allows dignified ageing.
The Director of Hilfswerk International for BiH (HWI BiH) Suzana Jašarević welcomed the cooperation between the governmental and non-governmental sector and experts from BiH, the region and the European Union, as well as the ageing people, users of healthy aging centers, in analysing the situation and identification of recommendations for the rights and status improvement of the elderly population in BiH. “By signing the Declaration on combat against the age-based discrimination, participants of the conference demonstrated their individual dedication to actions aimed at enhancing the position of the elderly in the BiH society,” Jašarević said.
Mayor of Novo Sarajevo municipality Nedžad Koldžo shared positive experiences in inclusion of seniors in the community social life through centres for healthy ageing. “The municipality of Novo Sarajevo has recognized the challenges that the elderly population is faced with and we have been supporting the work of healthy ageing centres since 2012. This project strives to support the adoption of strategies and action plans to improve the position of elderly people in BiH and I appeal to all levels of governance and local communities to follow our example and actively engage in the support and realization of the set project goals” said Mayor Koldzo. He announced the opening of the third centre for healthy ageing in the area of this municipality soon.
The project ‘Action Against Ageism’ is funded by the European Union in the amount of above 150,000 EUR and implemented by Hilsfwerk International with partners: Partnership for Public Health, BiH Red Cross and Association for Help and Development HAJDE.