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Action in Europe: EU countries get ready for ADA

26 Sep 2011

Ageing will be well and truly in the EU spotlight next year. 2012 is the European year of Action on Ageing and it is therefore only fitting that Age Demands Action (ADA) has really taken off in Europe this year.

The number of ADA participating countries In Europe has nearly doubled and campaigners in Spain, Sweden and Germany will be raising awareness of ageing issues and showing their solidarity with other ADA campaigners around the world on 1 October.

Taking to the streets of Prague

As I write, HelpAge's affiliate in Czech Republic, Zivot 90, are sending through photos from last weekend's ADA solidarity run in Prague. Before the run, campaigners were joined by former Olympic javelin champion Dana Zatopkova, 89, and Czech MEP Milan Cabrnoch who signed our campaign petition.

At the Brandenberg Gate

In Germany, HelpAge Deutschland has organised a colourful event in front of the historic Brandenburg Gate. Campaigners of all ages will join members of the Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and a group called the "German Red Noses".

The "Red Noses" are a group of clown doctors who visit older people in hospitals and nursing homes to offer much needed light relief.

There will be balloons, banners and representatives from the Ministry for Economic Development will be presented with a 5,000 signature petition calling for ageing issues to be included in international development policies.

In the Netherlands, Ireland and the UK

Our friends at Cordaid in the Netherlands will once again be profiling the campaign in seven Rest Van Harte cafés across the country.

In Ireland, local Age Action Ireland groups will be participating in ADA by taking photo messages of support for older people around the world. 

Mraija from Slovenia says: A rich society includes all generations In the UK, guests attending a HelpAge International open day will be encouraged to sign the ADA petition and a large campaign banner will be displayed by a group walking on the North Downs.

Meeting Slovenia's President

Our affiliate in Slovenia, Slovene Philanthropy has organised an event, which will be attended by over 400 older people.

At the meeting campaigners will finalise a statement on the rights of older people to be presented to both the President and Prime Minister of Slovenia.

Photos of Slovenia campaigners holding their ADA message placards have also been coming in thick and fast.

Welcoming Spain and Sweden

We are delighted to welcome campaigners in Sweden to the global movement. Members of up to eight local and national organisations will take part in ADA for the first time.

One group, "Pensioners Without Borders" have organised a seminar at which the Professor of Demography, Bo Malmberg and Thomas Hammarberg, the European Council's Human Rights Commissioner will speak!

In Spain, hundreds of  Unión Democrática de Pensionistas y Jubilados de Españamembers will be making their own campaign placards for our photo action and volunteers in Barcelona will also raise awareness of ADA.

Remember to sign the Age Demands Action global petition and keep checking out the Age Demands Action web pages for all the latest updates.

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John McGeachy
Job title: Campaigns assistant

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These blogs are personal reflections and do not necessarily reflect the views of HelpAge International.