By 2050, over two billion people worldwide will be aged over 60.
However, many societies still shun and discriminate against older people, leaving them unable to support themselves or act as valued members of the community. HelpAge Canada aims to achieve a world where we are all recognised and respected as individuals, embraced equally, and treated fairly and without discrimination, regardless of age.
4 out of 5
Older people do not have
a pension or income support.
HelpAge Canada has worked with community partners around the world for 45+ years
As a founding member of the HelpAge International, we work with organizations around the world to respond to crises that disproportionately affect older adults. From providing food and shelter to basic medical attention, we support older people where the need is the greatest.
We know that older adults are essential members of society, and we are committed to improving their universal inclusion and representation by taking part in an international movement for change as a member of the HelpAge Global Network.
Current Global Initiatives
Current humanitarian efforts struggle to reach older people in crisis, so we work closely with dedicated local partners in Ethiopia, Ukraine, and Pakistan to provide medical attention, healthcare awareness campaigns, food supplies, hygiene kits, temporary shelters, and other interventions that respond to older people’s most pressing needs.
According to the Global Humanitarian Overview, an estimated 274 million people needed humanitarian assistance and protection in 2022.
Actively addressing the “oldest humanitarian crisis” in the world
HelpAge Canada delivers humanitarian relief to thousands of older Ukrainians and their families through our partner, HelpAge International.
Since 2014, HelpAge International has been supporting older people in Eastern Ukraine, supplying:
- Hygiene items
- Assistive products
- Home-based care
- Psychosocial support services
Older Ukrainians are estimated to be in need of humanitarian relief since the full-scale escalation of the war in Ukraine
In humanitarian relief reached 7,700 older Ukrainians and their families fleeing war zones in 2021-22
A Rapid Needs Assessment conducted by HelpAge in the oblasts of Lvivska, Chernivetska and Dnipropetrovska, provides insights into the heightened and specific challenges faced by older people in the regions:
89% of the displaced older people had at least one health condition, with seven out of ten stating that they had more than one.
With special thanks to our partners
HelpAge Canada is proud to partner with Global Affairs Canada, The Canada Ukraine Foundation, Islamic Relief Canada and the Humanitarian Coalition, PWRDF and generous Canadians from coast to coast to provide essential services to older people in Ukraine.
Addressing health, nutrition, protection, and inclusion issues in Ethiopia
In Gambella, a region in southeastern Ethiopia, 381,660 refugees from South Sudan are sheltered across seven camps. Among this large population of refugees, 83% of Gambella’s population over the age of 60 has specific needs. In January 2020, HelpAge conducted a Rapid Needs Assessment in Gambella, which highlighted key concerns: older people with specific needs in Ethiopia have very limited access to food, healthcare, clean water, and sanitation.
Of the population aged 60 and over in Ethiopia live below the poverty line
Of the population in the Gambella region of Ethiopia are South Sudanese refugees
Benishangul-Gumuz Regional State is one of the 10 regional states in Ethiopia, located in the western part of the country bordering Amhara Region in the north, Oromia Region in the north-east, Gambella region in the south and south-east, and Sudan in the west. The socio-economic impact of regional conflict in Benishangul-Gumuz Regional State has worsened the already dire humanitarian situation in the region, particularly for people that were already at risk or marginalized. HelpAge Canada partners with Global Affairs Canada to increase the well-being and dignity of older persons and other individuals with disabilities in Gambella. We provide a tailored, integrated response to address the region’s health, nutrition, protection, and inclusion needs.
Responding to a disaster of epic proportions
Pakistan experienced a monsoon with 3 times higher rainfall than the 30-year average. The flooding in 2022 affected approximately 33 million people, and over 1 million homes have been destroyed or damaged by the floods.
One third of the country is under water, with 800,000 livestock lost –
a critical source of sustenance for families.
HelpAge Canada is appealing to Canadians to support older people that have lost their homes, livestock, and livelihoods. The flooding has brought a wave of disease-carrying mosquitoes, restricted older people’s access to medical attention and humanitarian aid, and has left entire communities without food, water, or shelter. Older people in Pakistan need our help. Together, we can help them recover from the effects of this life-changing natural disaster.
Collaborating to meet global needs
HelpAge Canada became a HelpAge global network member in 2004, joining 158 members across 86 countries. The Global Network ensures older adults can not only survive, but thrive, and our valuable local partners inform HelpAge Canada on the most pressing barriers and emergencies to tackle so we can positively impact the lives of older people worldwide.
The proportion of the population aged 50 and over in fragile countries, where conflict and disasters are more likely to occur, is expected to rise from 12.3% (219.9 million) in 2020 to 19.2% (586.3 million) in 2050
– Source HAI
Humanitarian Relief is offered around the world thanks to the support of HelpAge Canada donors
We appreciate the support of our generous donors in helping us create a world in which all older persons lead secure, healthy, active and dignified lived.