Ageing is easier with you

Over the last few years, the ageing rate is growing unstoppably in Spain. In 2021, it reached 129.11%, which means that there are already 129 over-64s for every 100 under-16s. In particular in the Basque Country, the ageing rate reached 158.5%.

Bearing in mind this context, different initiatives have been carried out with the aim of getting an active ageing for elderly. Some of these initiatives have focused on active ageing for elderly with intellectual disabilities such as the case below.

What is “Ageing is easier with you” programme?

Ageing is easier with youIt is a programme that aims to ensure the physical, social and emotional well-being of people with intellectual disabilities over 45 years of age. Furthermore, this programme provides them with the necessary support and tools so that they can continue to develop their concerns, their dreams, their life projects…

In other words, “Ageing is easier with you” is a set of practices that promote active ageing and the development of a full and satisfying life.

Who runs this programme?

Apdema (Association in favour of People with Intellectual Disabilities of Alava) is the association in charge of setting up this initiative.

Located in the Basque province of Araba (Spain), this association, made up of more than 1500 families, works daily to improve the quality of life of people with intellectual disabilities and their families.

Why launch such an initiative?

It is well known that the life expectancy of the population in general has increased. This is also the case of people with intellectual disabilities, despite the fact that in this group premature ageing is observed, in some cases starting at the age of 45.

Bearing this in mind, this programme has been set up to improve the quality of life of those over 45 years of age in the ageing process.

Objectives of the programme 

General objective: 

To improve the life quality of people with intellectual disabilities over 45 years old in the process of ageing and their families, working on 5 areas of intervention: association, volunteers and professionals, people with intellectual disabilities, families and society.

Specific objectives: 

  1. People with intellectual disabilities: promote healthy ageing and slowing down the symptoms of ageing through actions aimed at maintaining all their personal competences.
  2. Families: achieve more consistent family support and more active family involvement in the ageing process.
  3. Entities, volunteers and professionals: improve the quality of care for people with intellectual disabilities in the ageing process with a new perspective.
  4. Society: highlight the double discrimination faced by people with disabilities in ageing process.

Actions undertaken

  1. Regarding users: creation of a day care meeting point.
    • Activities: 3 days a week in the morning (3 hours per day), excluding public holidays.
  2. Regarding families: creation of a Family Commission on Ageing.
  3. Regarding association: creation of an ageing commission.
  4. Regarding volunteers and professionals: design and implementation of a protocol for detecting symptoms of ageing.
  5. Regarding society: awareness campaign.
    • Informative talks, statements of the problem in social networks, etc.

More information about the association and their projects: https://www.apdema.org/

Sources
Instituto Nacional de Estadística (2021). Índice de envejecimiento.
Retrieved from: https://www.ine.es/jaxiT3/Datos.htm?t=1418#!tabs-grafico
Instituto Nacional de Estadística (2021). Índice de envejecimiento por comunidad autónoma.
Retrieved from: https://www.ine.es/jaxiT3/Datos.htm?t=1452#!tabs-tabla