Social capacity, sustainable development and older people: lessons from community-based care in Southeast Asia

While gender has become a central factor in development, age and older people are seldom considered, and many organisations assume a top-down, non-participatory model of care - even when these organisations are otherwise engaged in sustainable and partipatory development. This paper looks at how older people have been involved in sustainable community-based care efforts in Southeast Asia, and argues that the key factor for project success is the building of 'social capacity' - the ability of a social group or community to function and care for its older members - which depends on the strategic approach to participation taken by the project.