Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic
Nowadays, in many developed countries, there is implemented a policy of active ageing – inclusive policy redefining status and roles of older people to provide them the same opportunities and quality of life as to other age groups. One of the roles, which should be occupied by many older people, is role of carer. People older than 50 years are important providers of informal care for their grandchildren, spouses, parents and other family or nonfamily members. Due to population ageing, this provision of care becomes more and more important. Is provision of care in older ages associated with lower loneliness and more meaningful life, as expected by definitions of active ageing? Or is it associated with tiredness and overload? Using data from SHARE project, I investigate relation of these dimensions of life satisfaction with intensity and multiplicity of care provided to the different types of recipients. Provision of care generally does not prevent from loneliness, but is related, except of very intensive care, to the more meaningful life. Multiple caring responsibilities on the daily basis are also associated with overload, but this is not true for any less intensive provision of care. Older people caring for spouse are most vulnerable to negative outcomes of caring relation; on the other hand provision of care outside the family seems to have only positive consequences. Provision of informal care as one part of active ageing may promote quality of life, but help of professionals is also crucial under some conditions.