FairPrice has launched a new programme “Celebrating Active Seniors” in a move to encourage active living and healthy eating among staff and customers. This initiative supports the ageing population in Singapore. Statistics show that 9.3 per cent of the Singapore population are aged above 65 years old and this percentage is expected to increase to 25 per cent by the year 2020.
Singapore’s first Olympic medallist, Mr Tan Howe Liang, 79 years old, who is FairPrice’s Ambassador for Active Seniors, will be championing active ageing and healthy eating through a series of educational print advertisements and flyers. Mr Tan will share dietary tips and will also be participating in various activities later in the year to promote active ageing. Mr Tan was appointed as FairPrice’s Ambassador for Active Seniors last year where he participated in various activities to encourage active ageing.
Mr Seah Kian Peng, CEO (Singapore), NTUC FairPrice says, “We are proud and honoured to have Mr Tan as our Ambassador for Active Seniors. With a rapidly ageing population where seniors are an integral part of our society, FairPrice is committed to doing our part to promote active ageing. Besides providing a fulfilling job, it is just as important that seniors lead active and healthy lifestyles. We will continue fostering a conducive workplace for our employees and also to help spread the message on active ageing to our customers.”
Mr Yeo Khee Leng, CEO, NTUC Club, says, “We see that more seniors are stepping forward to share their passion of leading a healthy and purposeful life with their peers, with Mr Tan Howe Liang as a good example. This is also why programmes like ‘Celebrating Active Seniors’ and U Live’s Good Life Ambassador Mentoring (GLAM) Programme have been formulated to help these active agers share their experience and benefit other seniors so that they too can be engaged to lead a fruitful life.”
Today, FairPrice extends its effort to encourage active ageing by roping in seven employees who are active agers themselves. The seven new ambassadors, who are customer relations officers with FairPrice, were hired in 2011 as part of a pilot programme by FairPrice called Staying Active Through Employment (SATEP). Now their new role as Ambassadors for Active Seniors will see them lead by example to encourage FairPrice senior staff to be active agers as well. Their active ageing stories will be shared through internal newsletters as they also participate in various activities for seniors. They will also reach out to senior customers by handing out flyers to promote active ageing and healthy eating.
As a major employer in Singapore, FairPrice contributes significantly to the employment of mature workers. FairPrice hires more employees above the age of 50 compared to national statistics on the current resident workforce. According to statistics from the Ministry of Manpower in 2011, 30 per cent of the resident workforce are above the age of 50. At FairPrice, about 40 per cent of its employees are above the age of 50, of which over 450 employees are above 60 years old.
One of the seven Ambassadors for Active Seniors, Mr Michael Ang, 65, has a fitness routine which includes swimming twice a week and jogging weekly. Mr Ang also volunteers by spending time with the elderly. Mr Ang says, “I like to interact with people and I enjoy visiting older folk who live in the one-room flats to find out how they are doing. I also look forward to work so that my brain does not get rusty.”
The announcements were made earlier today at a mass exercise event involving some 50 FairPrice staff and over 80 active agers from the U Live Community at City Square Mall. The session was led by the Ambassadors for Active Seniors. Participants were also treated to a spread of healthy breakfast options created using healthy eating tips promoted by Mr Tan.
Since 2002, FairPrice has introduced a number of initiatives to engage not only senior staff but also senior customers. This includes the Seniors Discount Scheme where shoppers aged 60 and above enjoy 2 per cent off their purchases on Tuesdays to encourage them to stay active by shopping with their families.
FairPrice also works with partners such as the U Live Community and the Health Promotion Board (HPB) on the National Healthy Lifestyle Programme to support and actively promote active ageing.