This exciting event in the beautiful town of Stellenbosch brought from all over South Africa, and from across the globe, thought leaders alongside engaged and enthusiastic academics and researchers, practitioners, professionals, care partners and community-minded citizens to learn together and to build a sense of community.

Delegates enjoyed an opportunity to share knowledge, tell stories and hear stories from others, as well as network to build new relationships.This Festival was much more than a traditional conference.

Delegates from 12 countries gathered (7-10 October) to celebrate ageing through music, art, theatre and a full and vibrant academic programme. The venue was yarnbombed with knitting from residents in care homes around South Africa. They knitted almost 2kms in bright colours to celebrate the richness of ageing. Carers were honoured for their being “worldmakers” for those they care for.

A stimulating academic programme covered difficult to talk about topics such as assisted dying, and sexuality in old age, as well as new perspectives on wellness, dementia, eldering and research. It brought together global bodies – IAHSA, CommonAge and Help Age International in a collaborative setting.

To those who came, thank you for joining us in a South African national and international collaboration of people and organisations as we celebrated together the richness of ageing in all its forms. I hope you had fun, made new friends, and soaked up all this Festival had to offer! It is hoped you were enriched by the experience!

To those who weren’t there,
start planning to be there in 2016!

- Margie van Zyl Chapman

My professional life in care of older people has since my coming to South Africa not been the same again. Ideally I came back to Cameroon triumphantly, having been so lucky to to have been given this huge rare opportunity to learn from the diversity of the richness of the care and support for older people that the conference had to offer through the refined conscience-speakers and facilitators at the conference.

I really do plan to organize a one day workshop with all my colleagues at CDVTA to provide a feedback to them on all the experiences and knowledge that I gathered at the conference. This is the first time in my whole life that I have had to return from a conference so highly encouraged, determined, inspired and highly motivated with humility to move my work forward and to be a better servant to older people

- Njuakom Nchii Francis (Director, CDVTA Cameroon)

I could see on the opening evening that the festival was going to be a riot – certainly of colours, in all that knitting, but the entire ambiance and the audience. Well done! I am truly impressed!

- Monica Ferreira (President, ILC)

Thank you for hosting this international event. It was very inspiring and important in shaping and influencing our review and development of the policies for older persons as a country. 

The department values your partnership in the care and protection of older persons and related fields!

- Jackie Mbonani
  (National Department of Social Development)

I had many 'WOW' and  'AHA' moments and is currently having a “Monkey” brain processing all the valuable information. A big thank you and well done!

- Margie Kampman - Methodist Homes

Thank you so much for your hospitality, generosity and courage. To be present at the beginning was the best type of education. I left fascinated, enthused and inspired.

- Dominic Campbell
(Creative Director Bealtine Festival, Ireland)

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