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European Commission gives prizes for outstanding contributions to the European Year 2012

14/11/2012 European Commission gives prizes for outstanding contributions to the European Year 2012

László Andor, European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, announced the winners of the European Year for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations Awards at a ceremony which took place on 13 November 2012 in Brussels.

High-level representatives of the European Institutions, EY2012 stakeholders, members from local, regional and national organisations, as well as academics and journalists attended the event held at the Charlemagne Building.

"The commitment and innovative ideas shown by the prize winners, and thousands of others who work for a better and more inclusive society, give me confidence that we can successfully tackle the challenges of population ageing", said Commissioner Andor.

Over 1,300 submissions were received from all over Europe to participate in the Awards. Winners in the six categories of the competition are:

  • generations@school - Gravity Racer Project (Huolin Koulu School, Finland). 12 year old students and granddad Hannu Gustafsson worked and learned together on an exciting project to build a gravity racer car.
  • Journalism – 
  • Written: The Generation Gap  (JP/Politiken Hus, Denmark). Four journalists at Politiken focused on how younger and older generations try to function together.

    Audiovisual: The Senior at Work (Cultfiction Oy, Finland). An 18-part reality TV series on public channel Yle TV1 about people who choose not to retire.

  • Individual life-time achievements - Bruno Põder (Kersti Skovgaard, Estonia). Bruno continued to work as a surgeon until the age of 80 without losing his positive attitude or his ambition to contribute to society.
  • Social Entrepreneurship - Two Generations Share a House (Typhaine de Penfentenyo, France). Ensemble2générations, created by Typhaine de Penfentenyo, addresses the isolation of older people and the shortage of affordable student housing. Since 2006 there have been over 900 student/elderly partnerships and over 15 regional branches opened in France.
  • Age-Friendly Environments - Life-Long Living (Fredericia, Denmark). An example of a new model for interaction between elderly citizens and the local social services, focusing on everyday rehabilitation. The programme saves €70,000 per month in assistance services requested by seniors –tangible proof of increased independence!
  • Workplace for all Ages - Managing People of Different Ages (Helsingin kaupunki, Henkilöstökeskus, Finland). Helsinki seeks to be a model for promoting an age-diverse workforce by getting everyone involved: from local sports centres, to health care providers, to occupational services.

The European Year 2012 for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations has aimed at raising awareness of these issues and promoted measures that create more and better opportunities for older people to remain active and independent and to ensure genuine two-way solidarity between generations.

The Awards Scheme reflects the three dimensions of the active ageing approach promoted in the course of the European Year 2012: employment, social participation and independent living.


More information:

For an in-depth presentation of the Awards winners and finalists, please visit this page.

A short summary of the winners and finalists may be downloaded here (pdf).

The official EC press release of the EY2012 Awards is available in EN, FR, DE, DA, FI and ET.

Click here for pictures of the Awards Ceremony and here to see the webstreaming of the event.

Video presentations of the winners available in the EY2012 Multimedia section.