In Moldova, retirement does not signal the end of one’s working days, but the beginning. The mandatory retirement age is 62 for men and 57 for women. After that, the elderly are required to grow food in order to support themselves. To do this, they rely heavily on the help of working family members and community farming practices.
The average pension in Moldova is 975.60 lei a month which translates to about 74 USD. To supplement this, pensioners grow their own food and sell it or trade it to their neighbors for goods and products they do not produce on their own.
Many of the county’s elderly population also rely on sons or daughters. Those who are working abroad send back money, although this often means that the elderly have young children to look after. If they live in Moldova, they often assist in planting and harvesting crops.
To help with large tasks, like harvesting corn, neighbors will often assist one another in exchange for help with their own work.
You can learn more about subsistence farming in this report done in 2003 by IAMO.