AGE Platform Europe, European Network of Equality Bodies (EQUINET) and The Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency (FADA) of Germany have on 27 and 28 June organised a seminar in Berlin, Germany, focusing on building capacity and partnerships between independent bodies for protection of equality and civil society organisations. The Capacity Building Seminar on tackling ageism and age discrimination against older people also provided the opportunity for members of these two networks to get to know each other and forge new alliances in the ongoing struggle against age-based discrimination and ageism.
Among others, the speakers in the opening section of the seminar were Szabolcs Schmidt, European Commission Head of Unit, Non-Discrimination and Roma Coordination, European Commission Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers and Maciej Kucharczyk, AGE Platform Europe Policy Director. Invited by AGE Platform Europe, the seminar was also attended by the Red Cross of Serbia representatives Natasa Todorovic and Dr Milutin Vracevic. The Serbian Commissioner for Protection of Equality also participated as were approximately 80 representatives of 31 European countries.
The Red Cross of Serbia were tasked with presenting an example of good cooperation in Serbia, on evidence-based advocacy that the Red Cross of Serbia implements in partnership with the Commissioner for Protection of Equality. Natasa Todorovic and Dr Milutin Vracevic underlined that the five research studies done in partnership with the Commissioner served to develop recommendations for decision makers, but also to design a training curriculum for older persons. The Red Cross of Serbia and the Commissioner have over many years provided joint statements for the Open-Ended Working Group on Ageing of the United Nations, which is an example of cooperation at global level. An especially significant example of good practice was inclusion of older persons in all the Red Cross of Serbia activities as well as the campaigns that promote positive image of older persons and ageing, which was recognised and praised by the seminar participants who also expressed interest to adapt and develop similar activities in their own context.