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“Ageing & Poverty in India”
“My work in HelpAge India has taken me into different states and communities and I have witnessed the fears and tribulations of the elderly. It is not an armchair exposition but born out of two decades of experience and understanding the plight of economically weaker older people in rural areas and urban areas. At the same time, fear and insecurity among them is becoming more acute in urban areas.
The Book is being written to share experiences with the hope to make life better in old age, averting an old age crisis and to provide better solutions for the future especially for those elderly who are economically deprived and who have become marginalized, unheard and unseen after having worked all their lives!
HelpAge reports on Elder Abuse show that it is a growing trend, although confined presently to the lower, middle and upper classes. However, there have been some innovations in the field of care, livelihoods and building an age-friendly society primarily led by the non-profit sector in India which the state has to take to scale. The book also suggests seven ways to improve the life of 5.5 crore older persons under the poverty line also coping the Corona pandemic. These policy steps will ensure dignity and rights for older persons in future.”
Mathew Cherian, CEO, HelpAge India.
Toine van Megen
The urgent need of age-friendly policies – a must read.
Mathew Cherian addresses in a comprehensive, insightful and convincing manner; the urgent need of age-friendly policies so that our elders can live with dignity and in good health.
The book covers all aspects of ageing and destitution in India. The author makes a strong case for the need of a universal old age pension scheme and calls for measures that address elder abuse. The book also looks into measures needed to allow elders to take active part in the society as they age. It gives a list of policies and schemes that have not been implemented or that were implemented half-heartedly.
The author suggests that at least 2% of GDP should be allocated towards the programs for the benefit of older population. This suggestion that must be taken seriously as it comes from someone with almost two decades of intensive experience in the field of ageing and related issues.
The author gives examples of how HelpAge India was able to provide relief to senior citizens and offer solutions for a sustainable future for them. The book includes a chapter on how disasters and the present COVID 19 pandemic affect senior citizens with significant damages to their lives and livelihoods. The book also emphasizes that increasing longevity demands more active and agile ageing or “Active Ageing”.
The book is a “must-read” for all those interested in co creating a sustainable future for all, more so for policy makers, health professionals and all who are on the way to becoming senior citizens.
The author has brought the most important and urgent matters pertaining to ageing in India to the fore.