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Seniors' Health Fair

Seniors' Health Fair

The physical, mental and spiritual well-being of Cayman's senior citizens recently took centre stage at the Department of Children and Family Service (DCSF) Older Persons Wellness Fair.

Some 80 senior residents attended, receiving tips on improving spiritual wellness, nutrition and managing medicines.

Held at the Family Life Centre, the fair was part of October's Older Persons Month, being celebrated under the theme: United Nations (UN) Principles for Older Persons: Independence, Participation, Care, Self-Fulfilment and Dignity.

At the opening, DCFS Director Deanna Look Loy urged the community to follow UN principles in the treatment of older persons.

"We have to ensure that we treat our elderly with dignity, keep them free from exploitation, and promote their physical and mental health," she said.

Mrs Look Loy also encouraged senior residents to remain active in society, noting that such participation contributed to improvements in their physical and mental condition.

"Don't limit yourselves; get involved in formulating government policies and join local movements and association" she added.

Regarding government's role, she said that the ministry has adopted policies to benefit older persons, including funding residential facilities. Two of these, one in North Side and the other in East End, are scheduled to come on stream in the near future.

Older Persons Month Chairperson Dawn Rankine spoke about the health fair's relevance, noting that the event allowed seniors to gather and discuss common health issues and other concerns that affected their well-being. It was also a chance for seniors, many of whom had not seen each other for sometime, to interact, she said.

Ms Rankine added that the lack of good health impacts older persons' rights to independence, dignity and self-fulfilment: "When seniors are unwell, their mobility can be impaired and they're unable to assert their independence and take care of their business," she said.

Rev. Yvette Bloomfield of the John Gray Memorial Church who spoke on spiritual wellness, urged older persons to pray and put God first. She further encouraged them to meditate, be charitable, practice forgiveness, and to bless others.

Senior Janilee Clifford said she felt that the fair was beneficial. "It helped boost our confidence and sense of self-worth by guiding us towards focusing on our physical and spiritual state. It has been a great day," she commented.

Her sentiments were shared by 80-year-old Gloria Ebanks who described the fair as "very important to older persons".

For further information contact: Prudence Barnes