Our friends at HelpAge International have released a report assessing the impact that humanitarian financing has on older people.  According to HelpAge, “the fundamental principle of impartiality – that humanitarian assistance is provided according to need – requires humanitarian actors to ensure that they undertake an analysis of the needs of all vulnerable groups within an affected population and that levels of assistance provided to older people is commensurate with this analysis”.  As a result, HelpAge set out to study rcent humanitan crises around the world and found that “in five of the crises studied (Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, El Salvador, OPT 2007 and 2008 and Honduras), not one project in any sector explicitly referred to or provided targeted assistance to older people” and that “only 0.2% or 5, out of 1,912 projects including activities targeting older people were actually funded”.  HelpAge, unfortunately, had to conclude that there is “a significant disparity between the needs of older people as a vulnerable group and the humanitarian assistance funded to meet that need”.  It adds that “[t[here remains minimal reference to older people within proposals compared with reference to other vulnerable groups”.  HelpAge reached these conclusions by studying recent humanitarian crises and noting that”.

Share your thoughts on these findings with IAHSA.  What can IAHSA and the ageing service community at large do to ensure that older people around the world receive the help they need in times of need?

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