Fair aims to help the elderly remain active and healthy

The country's first major public event for senior citizens will be held from next Thursday to May 7 at Bangkok's Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre.

The "Senior Happy Day" fair with the theme "happiness has no end" will feature activities involving academic knowledge and entertainment for the elderly.

They can join workshops for activities including yoga, handicrafts and computers, starting from beginners' level. They can also watch demonstrations of healthy cooking.

Over 300 booths from over 100 companies will promote an abundance of health goods.

Passara Kasemsuwan, managing director of VGi Kengkarj, which is co-hosting the event along with the Public Health Ministry, told a press conference yesterday that Bumrungrad, Kluaynamthai, Theptarin and Samitivej hospitals would offer free health check-ups.

A fashion show featuring clothes designed specially for the grey generation, musical performances and discussions are scheduled for the centre stage.

Ministry spokesman Sanga Damapong said about 6.2 million of the population were senior citizens and the figure was expected to double in 25 years while life expectancy would be extended to 96.5 years for women and 87 for men.

As a national statistics report from 2005 showed that about half of the aged suffer chronic ailments with heart and cardiovascular diseases as the most common, he expressed hope that the event would help promote elderly people's health and diet.

Jakrapan Seebunruang
The Nation