GINA was launched on 1 October 1996 as an initiative of the Ageing and Life Course Programme of the World Health Organization (WHO), the Swiss Research Programme on Ageing (FNRS) and the American Association for Retired Persons (AARP). GINA is a flexible, informal and interdisciplinary framework for organizations and their representatives interested in the many different aspects of ageing.
GINA’s membership consists of the representatives of organizations which have programme activities focusing on ageing issues from the United Nations in Geneva, from international non-governmental organizations (NGOs), as well as Swiss and Geneva organizations, as well as associations of former UN Civil servants and Senior’s associations.
The United Nations’ Principles for Older Persons (Resolution 46/91) provide the conceptual basis for the establishment of GINA through their emphasis on:
· maintenance of independence and autonomy
· integration and participation in a society for all ages
· human rights, security and dignity for all
· highest level of physical, mental, and subjective well-being.
GINA’s first activity was the celebration of the International Day of Older Persons (1 October 1996) in Geneva in accordance with the 1991 United Nations Resolution.
GINA participated actively in the International Year of Older Persons 1999 and its preparation with a 2 day-event in 1997 and 1998, and a wide range of events both local and international in 1999, including the United Nations Open Day in Geneva. The success of 1999 was granted by an Award to GINA from the UN Secretary-General in October in New York.