In an increasingly aging society, much more attention is paid to older persons’ education needs. One way to achieve this goal is the establishment of special training facilities for the elderly. Such special educational institutions are also needed due to the fact that older persons have specific needs. They usually don’t need graduation certificate recognized by the state, by the way, older learners because of their health conditions raise the requirements for learning, teachers must speak clearly and loud enough, the provided information should not be very extensive, the relationship with educational institutions should be much more informal, more liberal than in normal educational institution. Older people’s needs can be met in very different ways in senior world. Foreign sources claimed that older people who are retired and without major family commitments, have more free time and want to use it in a meaningful way. Foreign sociologists believe that not only the newly acquired knowledge and skills, but also new contacts to people are important, whenpeople learn in older age. „Brain exercise” is also described as the positive side of learning result in older age.
Organisation Alytus Third Age University is an independent, nonprofit organization which provides formal, informal and self-contained learning for seniors. The main idea of the university is to stimulate senior integration to society by learning. Older people attend courses and lectures in philosophy, psychology, history, art, science etc. Learning stimulates older people’s integration to society, purposeful life sustaining physical activity, work effectiveness increasing knowledge and cultural level. There are about 700 members in our university. NGO from Latvia „Vecmaminas.lv“ (Grannies.lv) unites active seniors, grandmothers, with long life experience who want to share their knowledge with others and are active in adult learning activities. The organization has identified the needs of adult and especially senior needs in the changing world and promote active participation in lifelong learning activities of its members. The organization members participate in voluntary activities, charity activities, especially for young women and women from single parent families by teaching them the basic life skills. NGO has participated in a project „Wise trainer“ in Riga City social Day care centres, NGO is a member of women – entrepreneur NGO „Tine“. The main goal is education of senior and adult women about active participation, against violence actions, lobbying the interests of women in society. In the project Latvian partner will share the lifelong knowledge about family issues and how we can support young women, how to teach them not to be afraid to report of domestic violence, to defend their rights. We will organize local activities around the theme of violence prevention, collect data, organize trainings and share best practices around the theme. Both our trainers and trainees will attend the mobilities in other project countries and disseminate the gained knowledge back to other members and other NGOs in Latvia. A webpage will be created for the project and organization and information will be also distributed in social media. Otepää Garden City Club The mission and main activities of the institution: Voluntary work:Voluntary work promotes elder people active and healthy style. The project activities give people more energy, positive thinking and makes life enjoyable. To improve their knowledge in communication and voluntary work.
The main idea of the project is to survey senior motivation to learn, meeting their expectations and needs in different countries (Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania). Which aspects of motivation to learn, meeting their expectations and needs are permanent and which are changing depending on education, social environment, cultural environment and country’s features. To achieve these objectives special methodology (questionnaire) was created and used to survey. After that data from different countries were analyzed and compared to find permanent and changing learning aspects. Data will be used to develop and improve the quality of organizations and stimulate senior learners to learn and to be active socially. Other object of this project is to start cooperation between partner organizations from Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, share methods and experience of management and teaching. The main focus of this project is older people or senior status. Senior status is society attitude to older people, government and local authority politicians to seniors, given facilities for active participation in social activity, learning opportunities, means and ways of seniors integration to society etc. Theoretical and practical knowledge of the participants of the project and their good experience will be adapted and used in their own countries. The offers how to improve and develop organization activity adapting positive experience from other countries will be given to local authorities. The aim is to get in touch with other organizations and develop cooperation.