13 ‘Young’ Seniors of Age 80 plus Felicitated by AGE-Mangaluru
Mangaluru: The tragedy of old age is not that one is old, but that one is young. The complete life, the perfect pattern, includes old age as well as youth and maturity. The beauty of the morning and the radiance of noon are good, but it would be a very silly person who drew the curtains and turned on the light in order to shut out the tranquility of the evening. Old age has its pleasures, which, though different, are not less than the pleasures of youth. The old are in a second childhood. When we’re young we have faith in what is seen, but when we’re old we know that what is seen is traced in air and built on water. No one wishes to grow old, to outlive their illusions. Only a short respite from cares and sorrow, a brief time of flowers, and music, and love, and laughter, and ecstatic tears. When we look at all the “Young” seniors who are the active members of Action Group for Elderly (AGE), one can say that there is active life in old age too.
The Age-Mangaluru NGO was established in the year 1997 with the main object of working towards the benefits of Senior Citizens especially those who are not well placed in the Society. Mainly to affiliate, amalgamate,reconstruct, co-operation and bring together the various Societies, institutions,which are working on concerns of the elderly and to promote co-operation and co-ordination amongst them. To mobilize elderly citizens towards social causes as paraprofessionals. To organize conferences, exhibitions, demonstrations and lectures to further the cause of welfare of the elderly without cast and creed. And today, the committee members felicitated thirteen of their members who were 80 plus, with a shawl, fruit basket and memento.
Prior to the felicitations, the programme began with invoking God’s blessings through a prayer song rendered by Lucy Clarence Vas, followed by the welcome address by Shameem Kunil, president of Age-Mangaluru. Other members seated on the dais were K.N.Manjunath, Vice President, M. Raghavan, Treasurer and Zahid Hussain Baji, Secretary, all of the AGE-Mangaluru. The Chief Guest of the evening 102-year-old Charles Reuben Robert Michael D’Souza was escorted to the dais by his Chaddi friend “Dukor Freddy D’Souza , impersonated by yours truly. “Grandpa” Michael was given a rousing applaud as he entered the hall, and the cameras started flashing from all around the hall. Some even took a selfie with this “old-Timer”, where for some meeting a 100 plus human being was their first experience.
The thirteen seniors felicitated by the chief guest were : Joachim D’Souza-age 90; Michael Fernandes-83; Charles Gregory Rego-85; A Sadananda-82; Irene Pais-81; Laura D’Souza-82; Radha Shetty-83; KC Yashoda R Bhat-84; Sushila Bhat Kandige-83; Adline Machado-80; Jessie Towers-86; SN Kamath-83; and Philomena D’Souza-83. While receiving the felicitations, all the thirteen were beaming with pride and AGE brought miles of smiles on their faces. May they all live to be centenarians like the Chief Guest. AGE also felicitated Chief Guest Michael D’Souza with a shawl, fruit basket and memento. The formal function was followed by entertainment, comprising of song Ananth Pai B.H -Song; Madhukar Bhandarkar – Instrumental music; T.G.Shenoy – Song; Mrs. U. Rama Rao – Veena; and Ashok Kumar gave Kavana/ chutuku. The vote of thanks was delivered by KN Manjunath while Zahid Hussain Baji compered the function.
AGE-Mangaluru arranges every month some lecture programmes to their members to educate them in medical, legal, social and health etc. by calling eminent speakers. They have the annual function “World Elders Day” when they invite inmates of several old age homes and bring them at NGO cost to the venue of the function and entertain them thus bringing some cheer to their otherwise monotonous living. They celebrate National functions such as Independence Day and Republic Day. And have annual picnic to their members. Periodically they also visit Old age homes with some gifts to the inmates of the ashrams in Mangaluru and outskirts of the City. So all you old-timers if you feel like you are still young, then join AGE- Mangaluru and make the best use of your old-age through fun activities at this NGO.
While concluding, I personally feel, Age-Mangaluru is doing extraordinary work. I appeal to all the ‘younger’ people to support this NGO which is doing yeomen task towards the elderly, and realize the ‘worth’ of these Elders, Our Elders, and see that their ‘Energy’ is used properly. They have lots to ‘give’ and it’s every body’s ‘duty’ to utilize this mature, experienced and Wise Energy. YES, our Elders deserve the ‘RESPECT’ that they have ‘EARNED’. Let us be a little more sensitive and be a little more polite and respectful, They ‘Don’t Ask Much’, give them their ‘Senior Citizens Seats” in buses , give preference in Queues and simple small acts like these will suffice-..”OLD is indeed GOLD”. Show them that you care and love them, entertain them when you can, and make them happy. You’ll be truly blessed.