International Day of Older Persons : The United Nations’ (UN) International Day of Older Persons is celebrated annually on October 1 to recognize the contributions of older persons and to examine issues that affect their lives. This day is observed to focus on the importance of senior citizens who sometimes are neglected in our society. This day emphasizes on our responsibilities towards our elder in order to make their lives happier.

International Day of Older Persons

On December 14, 1990 the United Nations General Assembly voted to establish October 1 as the International Day of Older Persons as recorded in Resolution 45/106. The holiday was observed for the first time on October 1, 1991.

The holiday is celebrated by raising awareness about issues affecting the elderly, such as senescence and elder abuse. It is also a day to appreciate the contributions that older people make to society.

This holiday is similar to National Grandparents Day in the United States and Canada as well as Double Ninth Festival in China and Respect for the Aged Day in Japan. The observance is a focus of ageing organizations and the United Nations Programme on Ageing.

As people reach old age, the risk of developing chronic diseases is higher and it sometimes might also result in disability. This ends up in compromising their ability to lead an independent life.  This further weakens their immune system making them more vulnerable to diseases. Dependence on others, cut off from social life and being neglected by family members further deteriorates their condition. In fact, chronic diseases including cardiovascular diseases, diabetes and cancer are predicted to be the main contributors to the burden of disease in developing countries.

It is our responsibility to provide long term care to them and thus contribute to healthy ageing.

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