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Friday, May 22, 2015


The signed copy of the Pune Declaration on "Making Smart Cities Age-friendly" was handed over to the Hon'ble Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Shri Devendra Phadnavis, by the Chairman of ILC-I, Shri Jayant Umranikar on the auspicious day of Akshaytritaya, the 21st of April 2015. And the same is being sent to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


On the cusp of the commencement of the vision of the ‘100 Smart Cities’ as propounded by Honourable, Shri Narendra Modi, the Prime Minister of India,

Acknowledging that,  India today has nearly 100 million elderly population over the age of 60 years which by 2050, may grow to  315 million and by the time these Smart Cities become functional,  every fifth citizen of a city and every third voter in the electorate, may be a senior citizen,

We, the representatives of senior citizens’ organizations, NGOs and stakeholders in the cause of population ageing, under the aegis of the International Longevity Centre-India (ILC-I), having met on the 15th of February 2015 in Pune, unanimously declare the following:

Principles of thought and action:

  1. Advocating World Health Organization’s concepts of ‘Active Ageing’ and that of an age-friendly city with elder-friendly, barrier-free structures & services encouraging easy accessibility for all senior citizens,
  2. Believing in the UN Principles of Older Persons and their emphasis on Independence, Dignity, Self-fulfillment, Participation and Care,
  3. Drawing inspiration from the Priority Directions of the Madrid International Plan of Action on Ageing, with special focus on ”Ensuring Enabling and Supportive Environments”,

We, the representatives of senior citizens’ organizations, NGOs and stakeholders in the cause of population ageing,

Declare the following areas of intervention that would serve to build the framework for Age-friendly Cities and Communities:

  •     Transportation, Outdoor spaces, Buildings &Housing
  •     Community Support, Recreation and Health Services
  •    Social and Civic Participation of Senior Citizens
  •    Safety and Security of Senior Citizens
  •   Employment, Communication and Information
  •    Development of Affordable Technology and Assistive Devices

Dedicate ourselves to: 

  1.     Ensuring an enabling environment to make an age-friendly city barrier-free, inclusive, connected and accessible.
  2.  Building an elder-friendly social environment having an age-friendly, affordable infrastructure that aids mobility, connectivity and most importantly, independence of the senior citizen as also developing ‘ageing-in-place’ housing facilities, using inclusive innovations.

We, the Undersigned, Pledge ourselves to:

  •      Supporting the building and development of safe & inclusive neighbourhoods, including public infrastructure, buildings, roads, pavements, elder-friendly housing, hospitals, retirement homes, residential care & nursing homes.
  •     Establishing safe, comfortable and affordable transportation systems that facilitate qualitative mobility, connectivity and easy accessibility of places & services for senior citizens.
  •      Ensuring the availability of good quality, affordable health services including preventive, primary, secondary care, rehabilitative and palliatives services, long-term and end of life care.

  •      The Government, society, community, NGOs and the Senior citizens themselves would work towards making all proposed Smart Cities of the country, “Age-friendly”using inclusive innovations and affordable technology, in the areas of Transportation and Roads, Housing, Infrastructure, Social Environment, Health Services, Safety and Security of the Senior Citizens, Outdoor spaces, Communication and Information.

Pune, 15th February 2015

Name, Designation and Signed by:

Dr. R. A. Mashelkar, President, International Longevity Centre-India(ILC-I).
Dr. Arun Nigavekar, Vice President, ILC-I
Mr. Jayant Umranikar, Chairman, International Longevity Centre-India (ILC-I).
Mr. D. N. Chapke, President, All India Senior Citizens Confederation (AISCCON).
Mr. N. M. Kodolikar, President, Federation of Senior Citizens Organisations of Maharashtra (FESCOM).
Dr. T. N. Wazarkar, President, All Senior Citizens Organisations of Pune(ASCOP).
Dr. Siva Raju, Dean & Professor, School of Development Studies, Tata Institute of Social Sciences & Hon. Director, ILC-I.
Mr. R. H. Belavadi, Hon. Director, ILC-I
Dr. Dilip Satbhai, Hon. Treasurer, ILC-I
Dr. Bhushan Patwardhan, Director, School of Health Sciences, University of Pune & Hon. Director, ILC-I.
Ms. Anjali Raje, Executive Director, International Longevity Centre-India (ILC-I).
Mr. Sailesh Mishra, Founder, Silver Innings, Mumbai.
Mr. Hiren Mehta, Harmony for Silvers Foundation
Mr. Prakash Borgaonkar, Director, HelpAge India
Dr. S. P. Kinjawadekar, Former President, AISCCON
Mr. Jaydeo Naik, Secretary, Viman Nagar JyeshthaNagrik Sangha
Dr. Vinod Shah, President, Janseva Foundation
Mr. Madhukar Pawar, Executive President, ASCOP
Mr. Ramanbhai Shah, Former President, AISCCON
Mr. Avinash Lakare, Central Council member of AISCCON
Dr. Alka Vyas Vice President,AISCCON & Vice President (Women’s Cell),FESCOM.
Mr. Vinayak Bhave, Hon. Advisor (Finance), ILC-I.


Saturday, May 16, 2015

WHO AM I - A Poem on Alzheimer's

The twilight hours of cool breeze;
a time for inmate-relative to meet;
Seated on Chairs and Wheel-chairs;
they looked unperturbed with the crowd around;

Some could talk, few sobbed …….agitated
but many gave just a vacant look,
If one walked non-stop all around,
others would sit and watch far away…..

The meaningless questions of “how are you”
exchanged with a mute silence or a sob,

What is this disease??????
Why this Suffering ??????

A successful  and eventful career
enough of wealth to enjoy their retired life,
their dreams of being with kith and kin,
in their loving home built with love and care,

All a forgotten past; never to recollect!!!.

Who knew the wheels of  Life
would rotate this way????
the road of destiny
would lead them here….

Can they…….
Enjoy what they own;
remember their mission of life;
share their fears and pain;
express their love to kith and kin?

For ages ….
Sages have dwelled in Silence to realize Atman!!!

This dwelling  has a different search
Neither of Atman nor Paramatman….

A search within…..
WHO AM I??????

-         After a visit to Alzheimer's facility in South India Poem written by Rama Rangaswamy for Silver Innings ' A1 Snehanjali' project.

      Copyright of Silver Innings

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Chasing the Grey Population, a Japanese way

DESIGNING underwear to fit human curves is tricky. For decades, Wacoal, a global manufacturer of lingerie based in Kyoto, has been measuring the female form and making products that factor in the toll of time and gravity. Its research is proving ever more rewarding. The company’s sales to senior citizens—who are just as interested in a graceful silhouette as women decades younger—are growing by double-digit rates each year.  
Many societies are ageing, from America to China, but Japan has a head start. One in four Japanese are over 65; by 2035 it will be one in three. So the country is serving as the world’s laboratory for selling to older consumers. Elderly Japanese outspend younger ones, says a study by the Boston Consulting Group. They now account for two-fifths of personal consumption.
Many of the country’s biggest firms have adjusted their strategies to tap into the grey yen. Panasonic, a maker of domestic appliances, has rolled out a string of new products, including foot heaters and lightweight vacuum cleaners. Aeon, a giant retailer and shopping-centre operator, has a “Grand Generation” strategy, which ranges from providing one-stop medical clinics on the premises to making in-store signs easier to read. Fujitsu, an electronics firm, has sold 20m of its “Raku Raku” mobile phones, with larger buttons and simplified functions, and is now introducing them into Europe.

Japanese firms have been equally inventive in the area of medical products for the elderly. But this is an area where cumbersome regulation can hold them back. Cyberdyne, a spin-off from the University of Tsukuba, designed a robotic exoskeleton suit to give mobility to the elderly and disabled. Although it gained approval for clinical use in Europe in 2013, it has yet to do so at home. Testing for medical products is costly as well as slow in Japan, and getting new devices covered by health insurance is a long and arduous process. Having opened up a lead in robotics for nursing care, the country risks losing it.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Alzheimer's trial stirs talk of senior sexuality

Whether Mom still wants sex probably isn't top-of-mind when most people are picking a nursing home for their loved one.
But experts from the Widener University-based Sexuality and Aging Consortium say a ground-breaking Iowa court case illustrates why both consumers and long-term care facilities should do more thinking about sex - before they get into trouble.
In the case, Henry Rayhons, a 78-year-old former member of the Iowa House of Representatives, is charged with sexual abuse for having sex with his wife of seven years in her nursing home. She had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. A doctor at the Garner, Iowa, facility where Donna Rayhons lived, along with her two daughters from a previous marriage, had concluded that she was too impaired to consent to sex.

The case, which is now at trial, raises complex questions about what constitutes consent for a person with dementia and how nursing homes should prepare for the inevitable: People of all ages want and need sexual contact.
"Our need for touch is universal, from birth to death," said Robin Goldberg-Glen, a social work professor at Widener who is co-president of the consortium.
The group, which includes about 40 experts on sexuality and aging from around the country, educates professionals and students in an attempt to reduce discrimination and advocate "for the rights of people in long-term care to have their sexuality respected and their choices respected," said co-president Melanie Davis, a sexuality educator in Summerville, N.J.

Read more at http://www.philly.com/philly/health/20150418_Alzheimer_s_trial_stirs_talk_of_senior_sexuality.html#xVRc1T78BMmeWkAO.99

Unequal Until the End

For the affluent, old age has its challenges. For the impoverished, it's only harder.

“No one understands old but old people.”

James made this proclamation over an ancient pool table in an impoverished neighborhood of the greater San Francisco Bay. The other men gathered at the senior center nodded in agreement. A slender African American man who grew up in segregated Georgia during the Great Depression, he elaborated for the benefit of the Gen-X sociologist by his side. As James deliberately lined up his next shot he explained: “Everything changes. Old is a different animal all together. And the only way you can understand it is you have to get there.”

Read more: http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2015/04/unequal-until-the-end/389910/ 

Friday, April 17, 2015

Tackling dementia and non-communicable diseases together

Tackling dementia and non-communicable diseases together is featured at 30thconference of Alzheimer’s Disease International 

Perth, 16 April 2015:  Risk reduction in dementia and other non-communicable diseases (NCD’s) were the focus of several workshops at the 30th InternationalConference of Alzheimer’s Disease International held April 15-18, 2015 at the Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre, Perth, Australia

Professor Martin Prince from King’s College London’s Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience, highlighted how dementia risk for populations can be modified through tobacco control, education and better prevention, detection and control of hypertension and diabetes

According to World Alzheimer Report 2014 ‘Dementia and Risk Reduction: An analysis of protective and modifiable factors’, dementia and NCDs are collectively driven by the same shared risk factors and social determinants; Very often they experience the same challenges, myths and misconceptions and demand similar approaches and solutions

That was the theme of an NCD dialogues session wherepolicies for prevention of dementia and other NCDs’ as well as key actions taken by individuals and businesses to minimize exposure to risk factors, where discussedThere is strong call for dementia to be integrated into both global and national public health programmesalongside other major non communicable diseases (NCDs).

As the global voice on dementia, ADI hopes that the conference will aid the crucial collaborative action that is now required from all disease areas to tackle one of the largest health epidemics of the 21st century. “An increased focus on healthier lifestyles, and implementation of effective public health campaigns may help to reduce the global risk.” says Marc Wortmann, ADI Executive Director.

Paul Zollinger-Read, Chief Medical Officer at Bupa, explains: “With half of the world's population in work, workplaces are a natural avenue to promote the behaviour change needed to tackle dementia and other NCDs, where we can start to change the conversation from 'getting ill' to 'staying well.' Prevention is key, and dementia and NCDs are driven by the same shared risk factors. As with cancer, diabetes and heart disease it should become second nature to think that 'what's good for your heart is also good for your brain."

Co-hosted with the Alzheimer’s Australia (WA), this global conference unites a dynamic community of international researchers from all over the world, dementia care professionals, medical experts, healthcare practitioners, people with dementia, family caregivers and Alzheimer organisations to address significant issues that 44.4 million people living with dementia worldwide have to face

Information on the programme and on the conference can be found at: http://www.adi2015.org

About Alzheimer’s Disease International
ADI is the international federation of 83 Alzheimer associations throughout the world.  Each of our members is a non-profit Alzheimer associationsupporting people with dementia and their families.  ADI was founded in 1984 and registered as a non-profit organisation in the USA.  Based in London, ADI has been in official relations with the WHO since 1996 and has consultative status with the UN since 2012.  

ADI's vision is an improved quality of life for people with dementia and their families throughout the world. ADI believes that the key to winning the fight against dementia lies in a unique combination of global solutions and local knowledge. As such, it works locally, by empowering Alzheimer associations to promote and offer care and support for people with dementia and their carers, while working globally to focus attention on dementia and campaign for policy change from governments. 

For more information, visit www.alz.co.uk

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