Ann Ntebe, social work veteran, Thornton
In an article in the Athlone News dated May 6, 2009, I am quoted as having said “the younger generation can learn so much from the seniors” as they find time at the club to participate in exercise, and prepare for sports days.
These are the days when seniors do not have to be concerned about day hospital appointments, taking care of grandchildren, doing chores, and even cooking.
That means less stress and more calm and happy seniors. It is amazing to witness and observe how mobile and active they are at sports days.
Nobody needs menthol camphor for aching joints on these days.
Blossom Seniors’ Club celebrated its 25th anniversary in September. Most of the club members live on the Sassa pension. The limited income does not totally restrict them from going on bus trips out of Cape Town. It means that they all have a positive approach to life. Every November the club travels to a destination outside of Cape Town for a five-day holiday. I call it a deserved wellness retreat.
Each member pays off the trip cost over 11 months. This November the club is travelling to Brenton-on-Sea holiday resort in Knysna.
At the camps there exists an exuberant sense of camaraderie. A special kind of social cohesion. They care deeply for each other.
I have observed that the Blossom Seniors’ Club, under the leadership of Sarah Daniels, 78, carries out various acts of compassion which is done without any fun fair. At funerals of deceased club members, a team will sing a special hymn clothed in their club colours. The club team also assist the family of the deceased member by preparing the hall where the tea will be served after the funeral. There is an Afrikaans saying: “Ons het nie prag en praal nie, maar liefde oorvloei”.
Another project is the soup/food kitchen which is run during the winter months from May to August every year. It is a project initiated by St George’s Anglican Church, Silvertown, but implemented by Ms Daniels and her Blossom Senior team and the Mothers’ Union .
One of the long-standing members of the club, Rosaline Humby, celebrated her 90th birthday on September 16.
She is such a humble person. At the age of 90, she caringly — with her best friend Maria Zyster, 74 — makes the tea weekly for the club members.
I applaud the Blossom Seniors for their compassion toward each other. There is a togetherness in that family that warms my heart. Club members find it a warm and welcoming group to come to.
That means the club provides an environment for mental wellness to thrive.
Ms Daniels is a community warrior, and I am confident that the Blossom Seniors’ Club will be providing a home for members of the community for many years to come.
All the blessings to Blossom Seniors.