The International Day of Older People is observed on October 1 each year. The day is celebrated by raising awareness about issues affecting the elderly. It is also a day to appreciate the contributions that older people make to the society.
On 14 December 1990, the United Nations General Assembly (by resolution 45/106) designated 1 October the International Day of Older Persons.
This was preceded by initiatives such as the Vienna International Plan of Action on Ageing – which was adopted by the 1982 World Assembly on Ageing – and endorsed later that year by the UN General Assembly.
The overall umbrella theme for the United Nations International Day of Older Persons in 2022 is “Resilience of Older Persons in a Changing World.” This theme will be celebrated by the NGO Committees on Ageing in New York, Geneva and Vienna – each with a unique and complementary approach to the overall theme. See below for more information.
The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated existing inequalities, with the past three years intensifying the socioeconomic, environmental, health and climate related impacts on the lives of older persons, especially older women who constitute the majority of older persons.
While older women continue to meaningfully contribute to their political, civil, economic, social and cultural lives; their contributions and experiences remain largely invisible and disregarded, limited by gendered disadvantages accumulated throughout the life course. The intersection between discrimination based on age and gender compounds new and existing inequalities, including negative stereotypes that combine ageism and sexism.
The 2022 theme of International Day of Older Persons (UNIDOP) serves as a hallmark and reminder of the significant role older women play in traversing global challenges and contributing to their solutions with resilience and fortitude.
Recognizing the vital contributions of older women and promoting the inclusion of their voices, perspectives and needs are critical to creating meaningful policies to enhance a holistic response to local, national, and global challenges and catastrophes, UNIDOP 2022 is a call to action and opportunity aimed to embrace the voices of older women and showcase their resilience and contributions in society, while promoting policy dialogues to enhance the protection of older persons human rights and recognize their contributions to sustainable development.