Social Assistance Officer in the Department of Social Services, Ms. Laverne Richard, said that in 2001, the programme to assist older persons was established and spearheaded by Mrs. Ann Wigley who recruited 12 Home Care Officers to provide home help assistance to older persons.
“Other than elderly care, fun filled activities are also one way to show our older persons that they have not been forgotten,” she said, while noting that although the international celebration of older person was only designated for one day, the ministry decided to take it a step further with a month long of activities.
A church service was held at the Zion Moravian Church in Cayon on September 30, 2018, to launch the month of activities. Other activities throughout the month include a day trip to Nevis for the elderly March on October 05, a movie night on October25, dinner at the Royal St. Kitts Hotel in Frigate Bay on October 28, concert at the St. Peters Community Center, ministers community visits throughout the month and Elderly Spa Days every Thursday through the month at the AVEC Career Institute.
Ms. Richard said that the activities are not only limited to the month of October but also throughout the year including a fun day where seniors are gathered for physical activities such as cricket, football, dominoes and other recreational activities.
“This is to give our seniors an opportunity to mingle and interact with friends and families whom they have not seen for many months or years. All of these activities are beneficial as it helps to stimulate their brain and enhance mobility,” she said.
The 2018 observance of the Month of the Older Persons is being celebrated under the theme “Celebrating Older Human Rights Champions.”