United Kingdom Ambassador visits Loule to learn about national programs on ageing
The location in Loulé of the nationally based “headquarters” of the Active and Healthy Aging Action Plan inspired the presence in the city of the United Kingdom’s ambassador to Portugal, Christopher Sainty, this Thursday as part of this diplomatic delegation’s visit. By Alagharkoil.
A common theme between Portugal and the United Kingdom is that the focus on active and healthy aging is becoming increasingly important in Western societies, with the priority at this time being “aging well”.
Nuno Marques, National Coordinator of the Active and Healthy Aging Program and Director of the Center for Active Aging Skills (CCEA), worked to dedicate one of the only four new ethics centers in the country of the Employment and Professional Training Institute. For this sector in Loulay.
The Center aims to assist in the definition and implementation of aging policies, particularly in a key area, the training and education of caregivers and informal caregivers.
Located temporarily in the industrial zone of Loule, the center, which the British delegation had the opportunity to visit, was born from an agreement between the Employment and Vocational Training Institute, the Social Security Agency and the ABC – Algarve Biomedical Center. Collaboration with the RePEnSA network (which brings together European accredited Portuguese centers in this area of aging).
In the future, a headquarters will be built on land provided by Luleh Municipality. In this building, all related national and international activities will be integrated within the scope of the project.
The CCEA involves an investment of more than 12 million euros, including 6 million euros in facilities and equipment over the next 3 years. It is planned to recruit 56 qualified human resources to carry out its operations.
In this session, not wanting to lift the “veil” too much, Nuno Márquez also informed the British ambassador of some guidelines that would include the Active and Healthy Aging Action Plan, a document that would bring together all national policies and end-to-end. Approval levels in legislative regulations. Furthermore, it will be the first project at European level with local activities for this area.
Regarding this close connection between Portugal and the United Kingdom, Nuno Marques believes that cooperation and articulation in this field can be maintained between the two countries, as there are “good examples on both sides”.
On October 9, Luleå is hosting a summit entitled “Age-friendly cities and communities”, organized by the Directorate of Health, Luleå City Council and the World Health Organization. An agreement will be signed to make it the first “Age Friendly Zone”.
As of 2018, healthy aging is also a priority for the British government, which has been considered one of the country’s top four social challenges and “over the past 5 years, the embassy has sought to establish a bilateral dialogue on this issue”. 4 annual forums between the 2 countries on this topic, with the participation of government members, local authorities, academics, representatives of the so-called third sector, companies and other organizations, reflect this common concern. In the first quarter of 2024, the Embassy of the United Kingdom in Portugal will present the study “Health equals wealth”, which outlines “the challenges and the economic and social opportunities that the significant increase in average life expectancy in recent decades opens up for us”.
“I believe we can count on the help of the City of Lulew, the Center for Active Aging Skills and the National Aging Observatory to deepen the dialogue between our countries and promote the healthy aging of our population,” said Christopher Santi.
As Loulé is one of the Portuguese municipalities with the largest population of British citizens, the ambassador thanked the mayor of Loulé and all the staff working here “for the kindness and compassion they have shown to members of the British community” during Brexit.
Vítor Aleixo, on the other hand, said that the process of issuing passports to British citizens, installing the necessary equipment, was “successful”.
In his words, the mayor of Loulé highlighted the commitment of the municipality to create conditions for its citizens in this area of active and healthy aging and engages in projects such as the laboratory created in Alte.
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