Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Some really exciting news to report. The over-50s in Malaysia will now have an organization to look into their interests and needs. It's been a long wait but better late than never.

The Foundation for Sustainable Retirement (FSR) was launched at the conclusion of the Retirement Transformation Conference held yesterday at the Sime Darby Convention Centre. A non-profit organization, it aims to "promote a sustainable retirement system and to grow an age-neutral society that dignifies the status of the retiree".

There have been NGOs proclaiming to be the voice of senior citizens, but many have either faded into oblivion from inactivity or are existing as old tigers - toothless and without bite. FSR does seem to have some clout judging from the who's who on the Board of Trustees and Advisory Panel.

The pro-tem chairman is Datuk Dr Zainal Aznam Yusuf, a man who wears many important hats. As a fellow senior citizen, he is someone who can leverage on his wealth of experience to speak on our behalf to policy-makers in the government. The advisory panel includes retirement experts from Japan, Australia and Singapore. The full list of initial members can be viewed in the FSR booklet that you can download here.

Content page of the FSR booklet.

 Key objectives of the FSR:
  • maximize employment potential for retirees
  • improve health and wellness outcomes
  • promote personal responsibility and well-being
  • complement efforts to improve financial well-being
FSR initiatives for the next six months:
  • job matching for employers and the over-55s
  • online magazine for stakeholders to communicate on retirement issues
  • online survey on public perception of retirement homes
  • introduction of a wellness program
Finally there is some glimmer of hope that the over-50s will not remain marginalized, abandoned and forgotten as the rest of the country moves forward. Lest the government forgets, the country cannot enjoy sustainable economic growth without putting in place sustainable retirement policies and practices. By 2020, that's just a mere ten years away, Malaysia will have reached ageing nation status. 10% of its population will be 60 and above.

With FSR mapping out the road ahead, there is hope the golden years will retain their lustre for retirees.

No comments: