ageing

Many European countries, including the UK, are now facing the dual challenge of responding to the demographic changes brought by population ageing, while also implementing tough austerity measures following the 2008 financial and economic crisis.

With increasing pressure on public budgets, this is an important moment to consider what it is that makes a country a good place to grow old, and where possible to learn lessons from our European neighbours on the policies and services that are most effective in giving older people a good quality of life.

Paper that is an examination of the recent restructuring and subsequent convergence of European long-term care models. This paper also aims to highlight the increased role of migrant care workers and the need for great social and governmental recognition for all care providers.

Stimulation of the care market can not only help to meet demand but can turn the challenges of an ageing population into a driver for economic growth – with new opportunities for existing providers, small scale start-ups and health and care technologies. This paper is designed to kick off that debate and look at some of the key challenges and opportunities in developing a new care economy.

The European Year of Active Ageing 2012 aims to promote the quality of life and well-being of the European population, especially older people, and to promote solidarity between the generations. This report highlights the need for promoting active ageing in the workforce.

Paper that explores what people with learning disabilities and their families have to say about getting older, their experiences and feelings, and what is most important to them in later life.

Cally Ward gathered views from a range of people with learning disabilities, who often have high levels of unmet health needs as a result of the inequalities they have experienced in the health system.

Paper that offers a glimpse into the life of older Gypsies as they reflect on their past and on how the non-Gypsy community have impacted on their lives. Traditionally, Gypsies have been nomadic, but successive governments have legislated against Gypsy life.

Many Gypsies have now been forced to abandon their traditional ways and live on permanent sites. Consequently, many Gypsy elders look back on their nomadic life with great affection and a sense of loss, not only for themselves but also for young Gypsy families who will be denied the opportunity to follow these traditions.

Paper that draws on the experiences and views of people within the South Asian elder community living in Wolverhampton. Through their stories, it explores the issues and challenges this community faces in terms of growing old and developing high support needs, and what quality of life means for these people and their families.