Adding life to years
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The Age-friendly Business initiative is an educational outreach campaign that provides practical low cost or no cost tips to help businesses become more age-friendly and attract older customers. The initiative does this by providing education and self-assessment materials to participating businesses. This includes information on how businesses can provide quality service for older adults that are affected by loss of mobility, vision and hearing impairments and dementia.In collaboration with Alzheimer’s Association, a module on dementia was included in 2015 that provides information on the detection, treatment and promotion of autonomy of customers with dementia, addressing questions such as: what is dementia, why do I need to know about it, how do I know if someone has dementia, what problems might a person with dementia face in my business and how can I help?Participating businesses receive a window sticker with the slogan “We are friendly” and they will be included in an Age-Friendly Business Guide developed in 2015 and in the web-based Age-Friendly Places Map.Currently four towns in the Basque Country – Ordizia, Orio, Zumarraga and Hondarribia – and 54 businesses are involved. In Ordizia, the City Council has decided to give a chair with the slogan “We are Friendly” to shops that participate in the initiative. They can put it inside (for people waiting) or outside the shops (for walkers). Euskadi Langunkoia –Age-friendly Basque Country – is a cross-cutting initiative by the Basque Country Government that engages citizens, the public and private sectors to create supportive and enabling environments for older people. Ordizia, Orio, Zumarra and Hondarribia are 4 of the 21 towns enrolled in Euskadi Lagunkoia.


Key facts

Main target group: Older people in general

Other target group(s): People with dementia

Sector(s): Social protection

Desired outcome for older people:
Build and maintain relationships

Other issues the Age-friendly practice aims to address:
  • Ageism
  • Accessibility

Contact details

Name: del Barrio, Elena

Email address:

Preferred language(s): Spanish and English

Age-friendly practice in detail (click to expand):

Engaging the wider community

Project lead: Local authorities

Older people’s involvement: Older people were consulted during the planning process

Details on older people’s involvement: Older people and people with dementia are involved in forums and focal groups about businesses and shops.

Moving forward

Has the impact of this age-friendly practice been analysed: No

Expansion plans:
Yes, in the different cities and towns of the Basque Country.

Looking back

We would like to involved older people in a second phase of this practice as advisers to businesses. Older people would receive training and would visit businesses participating in the initiative to advise them on how they could further improve.

Involve more people: (older) citizens and stakeholders

Age-Friendly World