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Helping The Elderly In Our Society

elderlyLike the poor, the elderly will not cease in our society. Young people of today will become old men and women tomorrow.

The strong and agile will in no distant time become weak and feeble. Therefore it is better to plan for the future especially the retirement or disengagement age.

Penultimate Saturday I visited the Home for the Elderly in Port Harcourt. This Home or institution was set up by a Catholic Cleric, Bishop Edmund Joseph Firtzbonne in 1978.

The aim is to carter for the elderly in the society. It was a noble and good idea advanced by the Catholic Bishop while serving in old Rivers State.

According to gerontologists, aging is caused by some many factors; hence they advanced several theories such as Wear and tear, through Genetic, General imbalance, Accumulation, Free radical, DNA Damage amongst others to support their claims.

However, there are certain diseases that are associated with old age. These include: blindness, frequent pains, diabetes, body weakness, swollen feet etc.

Social gerontology and geriatric studies shown that some elderly in our society are passing excruciating pains due to health challenges and their final disengagement from the social activities. They are lonely. Some of them are abandoned by their heartless children.

The elderly need adequate care in terms of provision of social amenities and infrastructure to tackle their demands. They deserve better treatment from the young. After all old age is a blessing, especially, at this age when life expectancy is low.

The demands of the elderly are so enormous. Besides, medical care, they needed facilities that can keep them busy as most of them have retired from active service, thus looking for what to do.

Government at the top should come out with better social policy(ies) that will effectively confront head on the challenges facing the elderly in our society. The local government councils should make provision in their yearly budget for the elderly especially in the areas of health care delivery and monthly stipends.   ###

 

Damiete West

08037502931

wdamiete@yahoo.com

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