Currently, people aged 60 years and above are considered elderly in Bangladesh and the average life expectancy of people in the country is 72.6 years. That is, after reaching old age, a person lives on average for 13 to 15 years. During this time, they can play a role in the society in various ways through their acquired knowledge and experience. The country and the nation will be greatly benefited if a database is created based on the skills of the elderly and they can be given opportunities to participate in suitable work according to their abilities.
Speakers said these things in a webinar organized today 03 October 2022 (Monday) under the 'Life Quality Improvement Program of Elderly Population' of Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation (PKSF).
It is to be noted that on October 1, 2022, the theme of 'Resilience of Older Persons in a Changing World' was celebrated in Bangladesh like other countries of the world as 'International Elderly Day-2022'.
The event organized by PKSF was presided over by the managing director of PKSF. Namita Halder, NDC and PKSF Additional Managing Director Dr. Jasim Uddin
Presenting the keynote of the program Mr. Gokul Chandra Biswas, Deputy General Manager of PKSF, initially highlighted the activities implemented by the government and PKSF for the welfare of senior citizens.
He said that despite various government initiatives to improve the quality of life of the elderly (eg: old age allowance, pension, retirement benefits, widow allowance, VGF etc.) there are several challenges in ensuring a dignified life for the elderly in the changing world. He called on the government to address these challenges including providing universal pension scheme for senior citizens, ensuring proper implementation of the 'Parental Maintenance Act, 2013.
' and providing free/reduced cost healthcare to senior citizens and giving priority to hospitals as per the National Senior Policy 2013. Expressed different expectations.
PKSF Managing and General Council Member Mr. Nazneen Sultana emphasized on launching universal pension scheme and ensuring free medical treatment for senior citizens.
Dr. Halder termed the various initiatives taken by PKSF as 'catalyst' to improve the quality of life of senior citizens and requested the allied organizations to take these initiatives forward.
The program started in 2016 as part of a multi-dimensional program to eradicate poverty is currently running in 212 unions through 101 affiliates. Various services including monthly allowance, health care, life support materials are being provided under this program to the elderly people who are not covered by the government's old age allowance program.