On 17th of October 2022, EASI organized an event meant to bring different generations and age groups together, part of the PAGES Awareness Campaign on age discrimination.
The venue was selected to be accessible to all participants and snacks and drinks were provided. The structure of the event was inspired by the concept of Human Library and was adapted to match a smaller number of participants. This activity model was chosen because of its proven effectiveness on overcoming communication barriers, internalised prejudices, in sharing life stories and practicing active listening.
Participants took turns to team up with older people to listen to their life stories. Seniors would play the role of "human books", while the other participants in conversation with them were "readers". Discussion was opened by a brief talk about the PAGES project, followed by a round of introductions and a walkthrough through the main rules and guidelines of the event. An open discussion about ageism was also encouraged, before splitting into smaller groups to allow for more personal conversations.
A total number of 8 participants joined the event, with ages ranging from 27 to 78, retired, teachers, working in social assistance, with older adults or in NGOs. Participants were mostly less aware about age discrimination among younger people, as it is more associated with older adults. Older participants to the activity had a considerably active life, as they are looking to visit their local senior day centre almost daily. They felt comfortable with sharing stories about their life, from where they were younger but also more recent.