International Day for the Elderly – a day dedicated to the older generation to hold hands, share light moments and enjoy life in their sunset years.
When is International Day of Older Persons 2021?
International Day of Older Persons is celebrated on 1st October every year. Many countries celebrate this day as a holiday for families to spend time with their older members and bond well with them. The US, Canada and many more North American countries celebrate this day on similar lines to National Day for Grandparents. In Japan, this day is observed on the same lines as “Respect for the Aged day”. The focus is on giving importance and celebrating the sacrifices and contributions that our older generation has made for us.
Why is Older Person Day celebrated on 1st October?
A resolution was passed by the UN General Assembly on December 14th 1990 and declared October 1st as ‘International Day for Older Persons’. This resolution came as a standing action on Vienna International Action Plan for the aged populations in the background.
As early as 1982, work began during ongoing sessions in the World Assembly for a basic plan to adopt special initiatives to the elder communities. Worldwide, this day began to be celebrated on October 1st, 1991. Many principles were set up favouring older persons by the UN General Assembly in the same year.
Going ahead, with further inclusions, the UN General Assembly openly accepted the Madrid International Action Plan. This feature comes as an analogy to the already adopted features. The focus on later years of plan execution stressed the many challenges and oppositions confronted by elders.
These issues were pinned against time, and every opportunity of suffering was questioned with relevance to present times. After extensive studies, conclusions were drawn for a holistic society that provides a safe habitat for all age groups to co-exist and live in harmony with each other.
International Day of Older Persons 2021 Theme
- The theme for International Day of Older Persons 2021 is undecided yet. The theme of the 2020 commemoration is “Pandemics: Do They Change How We Address Age and Ageing?”.
- 2019 came closer to the implementation of the 2018 theme. IT titled “The journey to age equality”, a promising theme for the older generation.
- 2018 marked the day with more grandeur. The theme was “Celebrating older human rights champions”.
- The theme for the year 2017 was “Stepping into the Future: Tapping the talents, contributions and participation of older persons in society”. This theme focussed on celebrating the achievements of older generations in society.
Importance of International Older Persons Day 2021
The contributions of our older generations should inspire the next generations. Usually, older citizens tend to get neglected in families from the younger generations. IT could be due to work pressure, limited family time, the concept of nuclear families, etc., but older citizens need more time and care from their offspring.
Discrimination on the grounds of age is strictly prohibited under our constitution. The welfare department for senior citizens ensures the safety and well being of people aged above 60. There are many laws enforced in favour of senior citizen welfare.
The older generation forms a significant chunk of the population, and it is expected to double by 2050 to an increased life expectancy rate. Some of the common challenges faced by older generations include nutritional deficiencies, low access to timely medical care, exhaustion of savings and money, lack of physical well being, poor health and very little awareness on how to reach out for help.
To bring out all these issues to the fore, a particular day is needed to celebrate their achievements and contributions. Hence we celebrate International Day for older persons with much enthusiasm every year.
World Older Persons Day 2021 Celebration
The central authority of every country has a separate department catering to the needs of senior citizens. The welfare of senior citizens is their primary objective, and they function in a manner conducive to their well being.
The print media plays a very significant role in highlighting the prominent celebrations of the day. The older generation still loves to read newspapers and magazines, unlike the younger generation that takes has become electronic in all ways.
Television is another medium of broadcasting entertaining programs exclusively for the older generation to make their day! Several press conferences are held wherein interviews of older citizens are conducted. Through these talks, inspiration is drawn about their struggles, achievements and the challenges they face in their ripe old years.
Schools, colleges and educational institutions invite their students’ grandparents and entertain them with their kid’s talents. Songs and dances dedicated to the older circles are performed as a dedication to their achievements.
We could encourage all our kids to gift pleasantries to their grandparents and shower their love and affection on them. Elders need specialised health care packages as money; health and fitness gradually go down the ladder as one begins to age.
Dependency on their immediate family members may not be a wise decision always. In this regard, health insurance companies could offer comprehensive packages to celebrate the day. Volunteer campaigns, marathon runs and individual awareness meet to discuss older healthcare needs and not be missed out!
We should encourage the worldwide celebration of International day for older persons uniquely by spending time with elders, caring for them and understanding their needs and concerns. Older citizens are a significant asset to the nation, and we must treat them with utmost respect and equality.