Barcelona to chair new Eurocities Active and Healthy Ageing working group
Barcelona has been chosen to chair the new Eurocities Active and Healthy Ageing working group. Fourteen cities are taking part in the initiative, which is coordinated with the World Health Organization. The decision was made at the Eurocities Social Affairs Forum held in Turkey in March. Paulina Ballbè, director of the postgraduate course on Active and Healthy Ageing Project Management offered by Pompeu Fabra University (UPF-IDEC), highlighted the dramatic increase in longevity in Europe (80.3 years on average in Europe as a whole and 82.7 in Catalonia) and the rapidly ageing population to which it gives rise. ‘It is a big challenge. To tackle it, all levels of government must take action. Eurocities is a great platform to exchange knowledge and promote local initiatives in this priority area’.
According to Ballbè, the ageing phenomenon cuts across all areas of society and will thus have social, political and economic consequences. To this end, UPF-IDEC’s postgraduate course on Active and Healthy Ageing Project Management collaborates with the Barcelona City Council on a regular basis. The programme has also been recognised as a "best practice" in the sphere of active ageing by the Catalan Ministry of Social Welfare and Family. Its objective is to provide suitable training to professionals and specialists who work or wish to work with senior citizens.