Employability and Retirement Security
Many seniors want to work beyond the official retirement age to remain financially independent and keep themselves active. Seniors hope to have meaningful job opportunities to fulfil their aspirations at their stage of life; a fair and inclusive workplace to work in; and an enabling workplace that is safe and uses technology to help them excel in their jobs.
Seniors want to keep learning, for work and for personal interest. Learning helps keep their minds active and stay in touch with society. Seniors cite affordability, access, and entry requirements as some barriers to lifelong learning. Seniors hope to see a more diverse range of learning opportunities that are easily accessible. They also want courses tailored for their age and to be recognised for skills and experiences they have acquired. They also feel that more can be done to publicise learning opportunities for seniors.
Seniors can and want to give back to society. Volunteerism is a meaningful way to do so while creating a positive impact. Seniors would like to have volunteering opportunities that interest them and where they can apply their skills and expertise. Some prefer more flexible arrangements, including being able to volunteer closer to where they live. Seniors would like volunteerism among older people to be promoted nationally and for recognition to be given to senior volunteers. They would also like more training courses to empower them to be effective volunteers.
Health and Wellness
Seniors say that to age well, one must be healthy - physically, mentally, socially and emotionally. Seniors want to live more healthily, with access to information on health issues for people their age, health checks, and exercise opportunities near their homes or at their workplaces.
Social Engagement and Inclusion
Seniors hope to see an inclusive society where the young respect and care for the old. They also hope for more social spaces near their homes where they can interact frequently with other seniors so that they will be less lonely.
Seniors want to age comfortably and gracefully in the communities where they live. Seniors want eldercare centres and primary care services like General Practitioner (GP) clinics and polytechnics nearer their homes. They also hope that aged care facilities will offer a wider range of activities in the future to keep their minds and bodies active. Meanwhile, caregivers want more support in caring for their elderly loved ones, such as respite care and financial support.
Housing, Transport and Public Spaces
Seniors want to live independently and not be a burden to their children, so they hope to see assisted living and aged care services better integrated into housing options in the future. They also provided suggestions on how to make our public transport system and public spaces safer and friendlier to seniors.
Experts we spoke with raised the need for Singapore to conduct more research into ageing. It should be specific to the local context and involve researchers from various disciplines. Research outcomes should also be applicable to real life scenarios.