Retired people in Moray are to be asked if they wish to join a unique educational movement that already boasts 360,000 members throughout the UK.
An open meeting has been called in the Elgin Town Hall later this month at which people will be asked if they would welcome the creation of a University of the Third Age in the region.
A University of the Third Age – or U3A – is a self-help learning organisation providing daytime educational, creative and leisure activities for people who are retired or semi-retired. Currently there are 950 U3A groups in the UK, each being run by volunteers as an individual charity.
According to the U3A website the organisation provides “life-enhancing and life-changing opportunities” for retired people working and learning together “not for qualifications but for its own reward – the sheer joy of discovery.”
The idea first appeared in the 1970’s in France and has since spread throughout the world, including Moray where there is a U3A group based in Portknockie. The meeting this month will look at the possibility of either expanding that group throughout Moray or creating a series of individual U3A’s in the region.
Explaining the concept the U3A website says: “A University of the Third Age is a learning co-operative of older people, which enables members to share many educational, creative and leisure activities.
“Activities are organised mainly in small groups that meet regularly, often in each other’s homes. Members, through sharing their knowledge, skills and experience, learn from each other.”
The open meeting to discuss future U3A plans in Moray is being held in the Elgin Town Hall on Tuesday, April 28 at 2pm. Further information on the U3A can be found at http://www.u3a.org.uk.