there are high levels of poverty among older women and men due to: lack of income, increase in disaster, absence of pension schemes, breakdown of the family support system, high burden of care and HIV/AIDS.
As populations age across the world, the debate on old age income security has also grown. Many people in the region go on working well into old age. Older people often contribute significantly to family incomes, and in some cases become the household’s main breadwinners. However, there are high levels of poverty among older women and men due to: lack of income, increase in disaster, absence of pension schemes, breakdown of the family support system, high burden of care and HIV/AIDS.
Many older persons, especially older women, are involved in the informal sector due to a variety of reasons, making them more vulnerable to shocks and food insecurity. Furthermore, the majority of people working in the informal sector do not participate in contributory insurance schemes which further increases vulnerability at old age. There has also been slow progress in adopting universal pension schemes in the region due to lack of evidence and expertise. Therefore there is a need to advocate for universal social pension schemes.
Older men and women, especially in rural areas, are primarily engaged in subsistence agriculture as both their main source of income and food supply. With the region becoming more prone to disasters including flooding, cyclones and droughts, this drastically increases the vulnerabilities of older persons.
Resources and case studies on this page cover the need, gaps and best practices regarding securing the right of older people to the income they need through sustainable and resilient livelihoods, decent and appropriate work and adequate social protection to ensure a dignified old age.