In Armenia and Romania, people have faced problems and difficulties after the 1991 changes. The destruction of political and social systems led to a serious deterioration in the health and welfare of its people, especially the eldest. Pensioners are in difficulties in all Eastern countries, with pensions that have become worthless. Their life became less secure. Unemployment and poor economical conditions forced youngsters to leave the country to find a job abroad. The number of lonely elderly people significantly increased;they became isolated, without company, feeling there is no place for them in the society.
They need a place where they can meet, exchange views, discuss interesting topics and do something with the knowledge and experience they have accumulated over the years. It’s important for them to keep busy. This joint project is created in order to support them, to help them through social activities such as: social or specialized clubs, lunch clubs with social activities, senior drop-in centres, and associations. But in our countries this kind of activity has no history. Nobody is trained to run these clubs. It’s necessary to identify the directions of activities of such Clubs for each country, to organize sessions for facilitators and prepare and edit a hand-book for them.
Melinda, Pro Missio Association, Romania
Meri, CDCS, Armenia
Below is the group which met in Armenia to plan new projects and programmes for senior citizens in their regions.