Due to the well-known conditions, this year’s jubilee Festival of the Third Age was slightly different in terms of organisation, layout and promotion, as well as participation. Namely, it attracted fewer visitors than we are used to from the time before the epidemic. However, we noticed that they were very curious and eager for knowledge.
On the first day, we attended the grand opening in the Linhart Hall of Cankarjev dom, which began with the Slovenian and European anthems performed by the United Veterans of Slovenia Orchestra. The Silver Thread – Association for Decent Ageing, the Trade Union of Retired Persons of Slovenia and the Public Fund for Cultural Activities were given recognition for their long-term cooperation. The title of Honorary Ambassador of the festival was awarded to Andrej Jus, Vice President of the Programme Council of the Festival of the Third Age.
For the ninth time in a row, the SIAE and our partners were part of this success story. We offered interesting content and ways of active ageing and intergenerational cooperation. Representatives of third age universities at AEC and study circles from Šmarje pri Jelšah, Kranj and Jesenice and PLYA Ljubljana encouraged visitors of all generations to lifelong learning through discussions and presented examples of good practice.
Viktorija Dabič, members of the Tišina Study Circle, Dušica Kunaver, Silvo Šinkovec, Marija Metlika and Janja Urbiha are the winners of the Awards for the Promotion of Adult Learning and Knowledge, and they are continuously learning. They are an inspiration to others and, at the same time, an example that learning changes life. From their role as learners and with their stories of enthusiasm for the use of new knowledge, book writing, intergenerational learning, involvement in various training, preservation of natural and cultural heritage, they aroused the desire of passers-by to learn and act.
Many seniors were interested in where, how, and when they could learn. They received helpful advice in our guidance corner, in which three ISIO centres from Novo mesto and Ljubljana participated. For further guidance, we directed them to the AEC, third age universities and libraries and informed them about the Where to get knowledge platform, educational offer and other SIAE projects and the Electronic Platform for Adult Learning in Europe – EPALE.
In addition to the fair, the festival also offered a professional and educational programme with current topics. The round table Digitalised Society and the Elderly was part of the professional programme, at which our colleague Andrej Sotošek, MSc, was a guest-speaker.
Mateja Pečar (firstname.lastname@example.org), SIAE