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Old Age Home for community in the offing

The pronounced need of the South East Asian Community for a Home for the Aged will become a reality, thanks to the vision and efforts being exercised by Bhartiya Samaj Charitable Trust Inc and its Founder Chairman Jeet Suchdev.

While it is too early to determine a timeframe for the Project, since Mr Suchdev is keen in the first instance to understand the needs of the community so that the Project would serve the immediate and long-term needs of aged persons.

“Bhartiya Samaj is keen to develop an Old Age Home that corresponds to our culture, traditions and social and moral values. Such a Home should be safe, secure, clean and green, environment friendly and cater to the medical and other needs of the community,” he said.

Mr Suchdev said Bhartiya Samaj commenced activities about 15 years ago and has been responsive to the growing needs of elders, senior citizens, women and children. Regular programmes are held for them (picnics, visits to places of interest and summer camps for instance) throughout the year.

Mr Suchdev has also been a veritable source of solace and help for many victims of domestic violence and marital discord. Many of them have had a new start in life and career following his advice and assistance.

A Dream Project

“The Home of the Aged has been a ‘Dream Project’ for Bhartiya Samaj since long. We are keen to establish and implement it as a part of our service to the community. Hence we would like to have public input before commencing work,” he said.

Among the stated objective of the Project is to ‘consult, collaborate, initiate and support the process of brainstorming on the future of old age nurturing.’

Mr Suchdev has prepared a detailed Report, which he believes would be the basis for public consultation and official discussions. Far from being rhetoric, he believes that the time for action is now.

He said it was common for mortals to yearn for longevity, beating the aging process; but Nature has willed otherwise.

“Old age is an unavoidable, undesirable, problem-ridden phase of life that all of us are constrained to experience and mark time until our final exit from life. While our ancestors led a ‘full life,’ blessed by sound health and surrounded by children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, the modern society is markedly different. The Joint Family system has departed from most communities, leaving the aged lonely and in some cases, without a proper home and day and night care,” he said.

Mr Suchdev however believes that by and large members of the Indian community still care for the aged and senior members of the family but modern style of living and economies of scale compel both spouses to work, leaving the elders to fend themselves for most part of the day.

“Most migrants experience dynamic transformations in our means, life style, professional and occupational challenges which constantly limit our capability to perform as caregivers.

“Often, individual efforts must be augmented by community support and programmes. Our Old Age Home Project aims to address the inadequacies and promote the wellbeing of our elders,” he said.

A Questionnaire

Although informal discussions with a number of individuals and community groups have provided Bhartiya Samaj sufficient information and incentive to launch the Project, Mr Suchdev hopes that broader and formal engagement with the people would provide advice and suggestions are that would be valuable. He has prepared a short, easy- to-answer questionnaire, which he is confident, would make the proposed Old Age Home more attuned to community needs.

Please contact him for a copy of the Questionnaire by Email bhartiya@xtra.co.nz

What: An Old Age Home

For Whom: South East Asian Community

By Whom: Bhartiya Samaj Charitable Trust Inc

Why: The need for culturally appropriate Home

When: As soon as the Community wills

Details: Venue, Cost and other factors to be determined

The Next Step: Complete a Questionnaire

Contact: Jeet Suchdev by Email: bhartiya@xtra.co.nz

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