It was Nelson Mandela who said “A society that does not value its older people denies its roots and endangers its future” and these words were reiterated when the City handed over 15 wheelchairs, walkers and commodes to the seniors at Lily Haven Place in Bonteheuwel last week.
Nursing manager Jennifer Barden, said the donation was much needed as 45 of the elderly needed wheelchairs and 25 needed walkers and often arrived from hospital with no walking aids. She said many of the seniors who had wheelchairs had had them for a number of years and they need to be replaced.
Mayor Patricia De Lille thanked the seniors for contributing to the success of the country and laying the foundation for growth, for bringing future generations into the world, and allowing them to further contribute to the growth of the country.
“Thank you for building this beautiful Cape Town; you made it grow and work.
“People often underestimate the value of the elderly but your life experience is of most importance. Thank you for what you did for our land for our and country,” she said.
She added that often the elderly felt lonely and that they had no purpose left in life, but encouraged them to relax and enjoy their lives.
“Enjoy what you have left in the good hands of those who are taking care of you. As members of this society, we must not neglect our seniors. The more we do for them the more we will be blessed,” she said.
The seniors also danced with the mayor, and Sister Jen, as she is known to the seniors, explained that every Tuesday the elderly spent an hour dancing, from 11am to noon.
She also invited the public to join in on the fun. “You are here now and you have seen what we do, you are now part of the family,” she said.
One of the seniors at the home, Mercia Pillai, said that the donation is most welcomed.
“It is very good and something that will benefit all of us so that we are able to move around and be active and not just sit in the chair,” she said.
Johanna Solomons, 65, agreed: “Hopefully this will encourage more people to go outside to the garden and not just lie in bed.”