Matia Institute, working for an Age-friendly Basque Country

Submitted by AFE INNOVNET on Wed, 01/06/2016 - 11:46.

Euskadi Langunkoia – Age-friendly Basque Country – is a cross-cutting initiative that engages citizens, the public and private sectors to create supportive and enabling environments for older people. Launched in 2012 by the Department of Employment and Social Policies of the Basque Country with the support of Matia Institute, it works with a number of communities across the Basque Country (25) to develop a network of age-friendly communities and facilitate the exchange of good practice between them.

Euskadi Lagunkoia aims:

•To promote community participation processes.

•To introduce changes in the municipality / territory to improve the quality of life of citizens.

•To take advance of the potential of older people as generative of wellbeing in city life.

•To generate a movement of friendliness in the Basque Country that includes the cities, semi-rural communities, and the social, public and private sector.

During 2012-2014, a period of time that has served to drive tools, methodologies and best practices in 15 municipalities of the Basque Country. Matia Institute, in charge of developing the project, designed and implemented the process in these municipalities with the involvement of municipalities, local agents, associations and citizens. The pilot in these municipalities has served as basis for the preparation of a Guide (2014) where to provide all Basque municipalities all tools needed to build a friendly territory and advance the suitability of the environment for ageing people.

Practical Guide to implement and use in municipalities[1] (Barrio, E. et all, 2014):

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Why did Matia Institute join the Covenant?

Matia Institute is a Spain’s leading privately-funded institute conducting research into ageing and disability. Matia Institute’s research is focused on knowledge development and its research applications through the creation of new services and products which will improve the quality of life of people who are ageing.

Matia Institute is involved in the development of Age-Friendly Donostia-San Sebastian, first age-friendly city in Spain.  Since 2012 we are working with the Basque Country Government in an Age-Friendly Basque Country.

Matia Institute joined the UE Covenant to share expertise and experience and to cooperate and implement evidence-based solutions to support active and healthy ageing as a comprehensive answer to Europe’s demographic challenge. The age-friendly movement is an efficient instrument for assistance to people and communities to tap its potential for improving quality of life and to participate in society according to their needs, desires and capabilities, while providing them with support, protection, safety and they become the core engine of this movement being protagonist, leaders and examples for project development.

[1] This document has been translated into English for distribution by ILC, with the compliments of the City of Unley, South Australia, Australia – December 2015