AAL Forum will hold its next edition in Bilbao, the capital of the province of Bizkaia, a region with high economic development and a high quality of life. The whole Basque Country (Bizkaia is part of this Autonomous Community) is very aware of ageing policies.
The Basque Country has one of the highest life expectancies in the world (85.4 years for women and 78.9 for men) and one third of the population is now over 55 years old (and about 7.5% of the population is over 80).
Public administrations are very aware of active ageing policies. In fact, Bizkaia ranks third in Europe, after Denmark and Sweden, in terms of the capacity of appropriate environments for active ageing.
The main programmes related to active ageing policies in Biscay are as follows:
- Biscay has fully adopted the so-called Active Ageing Index as a tool for continuously monitoring society for public policies, the second regional measurement of which reached 32.5% in 2016. The idea is to turn Bizkaia into a region for “All Ages” and that by 2020 it will be recognised by its citizens as an “Excellent region for ageing”.
- Biscay actively takes part in different European Demographic Change strategies, which will be discussed at the next Bizkaia Silver Week during the AAL Forum 2018.
- Creation and implementation of a point of reference and opportunity around the ‘silver economy’, with a budget of 1.5 million euros between 2017 and 2019.
- Also interesting is the active ageing programme implemented by the regional government, which includes different initiatives in the areas of health, culture, public tributes to centenarians, discount cards, legal advice, information and support systems, etc.
- Programme for carers of the elderly, with the approval of a “Carers’ Statute”, which will allow a number of public accountability measures to support the work of carers to be progressively implemented. The plan includes economic measures, such as pension funds or paid holidays for carers of the elderly.
- Creation of the Council for the Elderly. This is a forum for the participation of more than 180 entities, associations and organisations related to the elderly. The aim is to collaborate in the planning, execution and monitoring of policies and actions aimed at achieving the well-being of this sector of Bizkaian citizens.
Looking ahead to the next AAL Forum, the Provincial Council of Bizkaia team welcomes you to this event. We hope that your time with us will be very enriching, both professionally and personally.
Thank you for coming to AAL Forum!