Age is just a number


I have officially been in Alicante Spain for now six days! I continue to learn more about the culture within this city which has helped me gain knowledge of how this country functions differently from the environment I have grown up in. The cultural shock that has had the most impact on me thus far is how Spain views age as just a number. To further explain, after spending these last few days exploring the city on foot at different times of the day I have noticed a large elder population interacting within the community. From the director of the USAC program, I have learned that the city of Alicante works toward creating an environment in which the elder population is welcomed to continue participating in the community. For instance, in the picture provided, this is a space where the local government provides chairs to encourage these individuals to use the space as a safe place to socialize with other people within their age group. I have been able to pass by this location every day and have seen how this is indeed a location that is welcoming to these individuals. There are times they are socializing through conversations, food, and crafts. It makes me happy to know that these individuals put an effort to continue their daily lives despite the changes they are experiencing with their health and body. The reason I feel comfortable speaking on a topic like this is that I have taken classes that bring attention to how this population within the state of Nevada show higher rates of depression and anxiety that can end in higher rates of suicide. Within Spain, I have been able to see how these individuals continue to prosper in an environment in which they are supported. This is an example of approaches one can take to be able to help empower this population.