The European Commission’s Education and Culture Agency has announced the approval of the funding application for the AGELESS project, the acronym in English for ‘Preventing premature ageing through sport and social inclusion’ (AGELESS).

The focus of the project is on people with disabilities and cognitive impairment, who are at greater risk of premature ageing, and the resulting mental and physical decline and chronic diseases. This risk has been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic and in particular by the restrictions on sports and motor activities in the last two years.

The AGELESS project intends to address this critical issue and develop a European collaborative venture between the facilities of the Order and the Hospitaller Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in order to identify and promote programmes for maintaining psychophysical fitness and preventing the risk of premature ageing.

The project will start in the summer and continue throughout 2023, coordinated by the Sisters Hospitallers’ rehabilitation centre in Funchal, Madeira. The other project partners are the Pai Menni social-health care centre in Betanzos (Spain) and the Santa Germana Centre in Paris – both belonging to the Sisters Hospitallers – together with the Order’s multi-sports centre for disabled people in Gijón and the Lecourbe medical-social facility in Paris.

In addition to the 3 transnational meetings (Gijón, Funchal and Paris), the partners will work together to publish a guide and a protocol on exercise and motor rehabilitation programmes for reducing the risk of premature ageing among disabled and disadvantaged people.

The AGELESS project will therefore contribute not only to improving the quality of life and the life expectancy of the beneficiaries, but also to strengthening the European dimension and interprovincial and inter-Congregational cooperation between the facilities of the Order and the Sisters Hospitallers. 

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