Getting older people’s voices heard

We want every older person, everywhere, to be able to say: “My voice is heard”.


Older people are often not heard and denied their rights, wishes and needs because of ageism and inequality. Therefore supporting them to have their voices heard is about challenging deep-rooted power imbalances and empowering them.

Having a voice is about the ability to claim our rights, to make choices and to participate meaningfully in decision-making in all parts of life, including the personal, family, social and political.

The HelpAge Global Network supports and amplifies older people’s voices in many different ways, for example, by developing Older People’s Associations (OPA’s) around the world, by training older people about their rights and supporting older activists to have their voices heard by decision-makers at different levels.

HelpAge works within a voice-centred framework that guides our planning and action to ensure older people are heard at local, national and global levels. Read the ‘HelpAge Voice framework: An introduction’ to find out more about it and the range of activities that the HelpAge Global Network members are undertaking to strengthen older people’s voices and getting them heard across the focus areas of our 2030 Strategy.


Voice training toolkit

We have developed a ‘voice training toolkit’ to help partners, network members, and staff understand the key elements of the framework and to strengthen their ability to implement activities that ensure older people are heard at all levels.

The toolkit comprises six training modules, facilitators’ guidelines, and a series of handouts.

Surja Maya Gopali (70) - Nepal

Modules one to four

The guide for modules one to four is accompanied by six handouts which support different training sessions.


Module five

Voice and age-friendly cities and communities. This module is accompanied by five handouts.

Module six

Voice and healthy longevity. This module is accompanied by four handouts.

I want society to better understand my needs and characteristics, to listen to and respect my voice

Older person, Vietnam


Take a look at our report ‘Are older people’s voices being heard?’ which highlights the challenges older people face in exercising their voice throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. It also contains useful learning for civil society organisations to strengthen activities that ensure older people are heard at all levels.

Subscribe to our newsletter