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Two days in the life of older persons and younth

UNFPA, together with a group of young people representing Y-Peer Network of Armenia, the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs, and a group of Yerevan-based single older persons carried out an experimental initiative that can be conditionally named "Two days in the life of older persons and youth" devoted to October 1, International Day of Older Persons.

The idea was to have young people live a day in the life of older persons just as the latter do - with their daily things to care about; and the next day the older persons would live a day in a life of modern Armenian youth to observe the realities of nowadays youth.

Simple at a first glance, this task, as the young people involved in the initiative later confessed, was hiding very subtle and fragile human affections, feelings and relations that came to light later on.

On the first day of the initiative each of the young people visited one older person and spent the day with them doing shopping, cooking dinner, playing “nardi” (backgammon), etc. The next day it was young people's turn to lead: they took the older person to hairdressers, to the movies, pizzeria ... And in the evening everyone gathered together at one of the karaoke bars in Yerevan; one could hear them sing Armenian classics like "The First Love Song", "The Water Comes Down Beneath the Clouds ...", as well as "Autumn" by DDT and "Grass Near the House" by Zemlyane. 

This was the ending of the experiment, but certainly not of the relationships between our young and older persons, which we are going to watch carefully. 

It is important for those who are not yet older persons to understand that the attitude they have towards the elderly people is the attitude towards their own future. 

According to 2010 data, 14.6 per cent of Armenia's population is 60 or above, and according to UN classification Armenia's population is considered old.