The signing of the cooperation agreement between Riga Stradiņš University, the Latvian Pensioners’ Association, the Estonian Pensioners’ Union and the Lithuanian Union of Pensioners Bočiai earlier this month earmarked the beginning of implementation of a joint project “Age is not an Obstacle” financed by NordPlus Adult. The project, covering all three Baltic States, will last for two and a half years and is aimed at improving the quality of life of elderly population.
During implementation of the project, it is planned to elaborate training programmes, develop training materials and to train teaching staff who will afterwards provide respective training to recently retired and to persons of pre-retirement age on the following topics:
- How to handle retirement (including possibilities of receiving social aid or launching business to increase one’s monthly income)
- How to maintain physical health
- How to retain emotional health and acquire new knowledge and skills
- How to prevent and overcome boredom.
The first project meeting was held at the premises of Riga Stradiņš University, bringing together project partners to set up four ad hoc groups. According to the project implementation schedule, training programmes have to be elaborated by the next project meeting to be held in Vilnius in December, whereas the teaching materials have to be finalized by the summer of 2018 in order the autumn months could be already devoted to the training of 40 lecturers from project partner states. The work with the target audience – persons in pre-retirement age and recently retired will be carried out starting from 2019.
“Although while discussing job-related matters people of working age frequently attempt to create the impression that they are longing for retirement, nevertheless actual retirement might be a truly shocking experience and professional assistance might be of vital importance for adjusting to the new circumstances. The methodologist of the Department of Welfare and Social Work Dagnija Staķe sees the importance of the project, noting that, “This is a truly needed and unique project not only in Latvia but in the entire Baltic region. The participants of the project are lecturers from the Faculty of Public Health and Social Welfare and from the Faculty of Rehabilitation.”
The project is implemented with the financial assistance of the Nordic Council of Ministers’ education and training programme NordPlus.