TAFTA commemorates International Day of Older Persons with a few elder wisdoms

The Association for the Aged (Tafta) is honouring the United Nations’ International Day of Older Persons (UNIDOP) on 1 October by embracing this year’s theme of “Celebrating Older Human Rights Champions”.
The Association, which annually commemorates the UNIDOP day of observation with a week of commemorative activities, has decided this year to use the platform presented by the theme to showcase some of Tafta elders’ wisdoms and human rights experiences.

“What better way to celebrate this Day than by sharing the years of knowledge, experience and wisdom retained by this generation?” explains Tafta CEO Femada Shamam.

Shamam added that by doing so, the association also hoped to dispel some of the myths and stigmas of diminished mental capacity often associated with the ageing process. “As the UN declaration around ageing rightfully states; the process of ageing should not compromise an older person’s fundamental human rights and inherent dignity, which is why, at Tafta we dedicate our efforts to ensuring that the National Week of Older Persons is commemorated with a range of activities to reaffirm our own commitment to promoting the human rights of all older persons,” Shamam said.

Events included in the week-long “Week of the Older Persons” commemorative calendar this year, as it is celebrated in South Africa, include a picnic for all Tafta elders on 1 October in Amanzimtoti, the elders’ Annual sports day at Hartley Road Primary on 3 October and an Italian themed social planned for the Anna Conradie Wellness Centre at Tafta Lodge on 4 October 2018. Also included in the week’s line-up are, tea and pamper parties, visits to restaurants, Ushaka Marine World and other outings sponsored by some of the associations long standing benefactors.

98-year old Tafta Kings Hall resident Mrs Senmathie Pillay, says growing old means keeping busy and keeping her mind active by supporting causes that will benefit others. “We can each play a part in making the world a better place through the service of others. When you’re able to, always reach out to a person who needs a helping hand.”

Hashim and Gloria Vawda, also Tafta residents, say their own experiences in a previously segregated South Africa changed significantly when they moved into an integrated Tafta community. Said Mr Vawda: “I’ve learnt that you need to invest time in looking past exteriors – get to know people on a deeper level and differences become insignificant.”

Barbara Bannister, a former-Tafta employee and resident at Tafta’s Cambridge Gardens, says the Association’s leadership, of which she was part, often found loopholes to ensure all elders were treated with dignity and received the assistance they required.

“Without Tafta, I don’t know what the sub-economic elderly people of Durban would have done over the years. Again and again, we were called on to come to the rescue of an elder, or groups of elders seeking care,” she said. “And if a patient was ready to be discharged from Addington Hospital, and had no accommodation, Tafta would be called on to house them. If there were cases of abuse reported, we were again the first port of call and never, in my history of working in Tafta, have I known us to walk away.”

All of these Tafta residents also feature in the Association’s commemorative Coffee Table book; a 60 year review of the Association’s history in elder care. To purchase a copy of the book, which retails at R350, to support Tafta, email ateesha@tafta.org.za or call her on 031 332 3721.

ABOUT Tafta – The Association for the Aged
Tafta is one of South Africa’s leading, registered non-profit organisation in Care in KZN.
Established in 1958, for more than 5 decades, Tafta has been the leading provider of Care focusing primarily on the needs of the elderly and vulnerable groups in Durban.
Our unique value proposition lies in creating value for clients and our partners with a key focus on outcomes and benefits. Our strength in healthcare, community outreach programmes and community development initiatives are our main differentiators.   We seamlessly integrate our services with best in class processes and programmes that maximise efficiency, quality, safety and service excellence.

Our Mission:
Our mission is to encourage and promote active ageing in older people-to live as independent members of the community for as long as possible, and to care for those who are no longer able to look after themselves. Our aim is to alleviate distress of the elderly and other vulnerable groups by using our resources in the most effective and efficient manner and where the need is greatest.

Our Vision:
“Leaders in innovative solutions for elders, inspiring a life worth living”

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