In the spirit of International Day of Older Persons, Noncedo Adult Care and HIV/Aids Centre, in Langa, slammed the abuse of elderly people.
The centre, which seeks to achieve sustainable developmental programmes and initiatives to improve the quality of life of the elderly people affected by HIV/Aids, hosted a lunch for seniors on Thursday October 4 to mark the day which is recognised by the World Health Organisation, an dcommemorated annually on Sunday October 1.
Centre founder Noncedo Nkqitamo said seniors should be recognised for their wisdom, love and ubuntu. She said she was concerned about the prevelant physical and mental abuse of elderly people, as well as the financial manipulation of seniors, by young people. She praised older persons for keeping homes and families together.
“When I first arrived in Cape Town I was kept by a senior that I didn’t even know. In fact, I used to stay from house to house because I had nowhere to stay.
“All those houses were run by seniors. They looked after me and my baby at the same time. My story with seniors started in those years. I had no one and poor but senior people took me under their wings. That is why I will always love them,” she said.
Ms Nkqintamo brought lunch and other goodies for the elders. Those who attended, came from Langa and surrounding areas, among them Gugulethu, Kalkfontein, Netreg, Manenberg and Bonteheuwel.
She said elder persons possessed wisdom and experience that everyone could benefit from and called on young people to look after them.
She also called on the seniors to share their experiences with youth.
“Most elderly people do not have people that look after them,” she said.
“Some are ill-treated by their grandchildren because of their money. But mostly these children do not have time for their seniors.” Ms Nkqintamo said the lunch was an annual event aimed at appreciating elderly people.
“I appeal to young people not to abuse their grannies and grandfathers,” she said.Senior Nomalungelo Mathole praised Ms Nkqintamo for her love of the elderly. “She is such an amazing young girl to me. She is surprising because she always comes up with these luncheons for us. “She is talented and has love for us. Her love for seniors is unlimited. May she be blessed and live longer,”she said. Another senior, Zanele Mbetani, said the centre ran a couple of developmental projects and that it was good to be part of a centre that took care of seniors.
“She is developing Langa and taking care of its people. God gave her a good heart. Langa should be happy to have someone like her.
“All we need to do is to work with her. She always brings us surprises,” she said.
lThe centre is raising funds for its activities and has appealed to people to help wherever they can. Ms Nkqintamo can be contacted on 076 849 9502 or 073 620 1763.