The Red Cross of Serbia is starting the implementation of the IPA project called “Initiative for the Social Inclusion of the Elderly.” It is a three-year project financed by the European Union, with part of the funds provided by the Austrian Development Cooperation. The Red Cross of Serbia is responsible for the implementation of the Project, and the partners are Austrian Red Cross, Albanian Association of Gerontology and Geriatrics, Non-Governmental Organization “Osmjeh” from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro Red Cross, Red Cross of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and NGO “Humanost” from the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.
The primary objective of the Project is greater and more active inclusion of the elderly in the decision-making processes relating to aging and age, as well as strengthening the positive image of the elderly in the countries involved in the Project.
To accomplish this objective, first of all, it is necessary to improve the capacities of the civil society organizations and the elderly themselves with training and workshops. Also, it is important to cooperate with the media in order to change the image of the elderly and age, in general. Raising public awareness is also planned with campaigns organized simultaneously in all five countries on healthy aging, lifelong learning, and volunteering. Advocating for the improvement of the quality of life of the elderly is a vital part of the Project. Therefore, there are surveys planned that would collect the necessary data for creating recommendations for decision makers and inclusive policies.