Anand Katoch along with others launching the ‘Elderly Care in India’ book
Anand Katoch along with others launching the ‘Elderly Care in India’ book

The two-day international conference on "Services to the Elderly: Challenges and Trends", which is organised by Heritage Foundation in association with The Global Ageing Network, began at ITC Grand Kakatiya on Thursday.

Director of National Institute of Social Defence, Anand Katoch inaugurated the event in the presence of Marcus Riley, Chairman, Global Ageing Network, USA; Dr K R Gangadharan, Founder, Heritage Foundation; Mathew Cherian, Chief Executive HelpAge India; Prof S Siva Raju, Dy. Director, Tata Institute of Social Sciences; Jack York, USA, co‐founder & president of It’s Never 2 Late (iN2L) and Dr Isaacson, Research Fellow, MIT Agelab, USA.

Speaking at the event, Katoch said, “The Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment is formulating a scheme to provide assisted devices to the elderly in the BPL sections and the scheme should be launched this financial year. The National Policy for Older People 1999 is being reviewed by the Government and will be known as National Policy for Senior Citizens henceforth.”

“National Institute of Social Defence is also emphasising on the need to have trained manpower to support elderly and as part of this we are undertaking training programmes,” he said. Dr Gangadharan said, “The emphasis of the Conference is primarily to share experiences of the organisations and countries on ageing and focus purely on services from care providers perspective and not on what government should do.”

“We will deliberate on issues like how to handle people with age related problems like dementia, how to leverage technology to make life easy for elderly, relevance of aged friendly environment in Smart cities etc,” he added.

Prof Raju said, “The conference is emphasising on knowing and sharing how others are caring and serving elderly in their countries and learn the best practices. A report prepared from the deliberations here will be presented to the Government, NGOs and all stake holders in elderly care.”

A book published by SAGE on Care-giving was released and the two authors were present. A special issue on Positive Ageing, of Journal published by the Madras School of Social Work was also released and the Principal of the institute along with the Guest Editor and few authors were present.