CAREGIVERS OF SENIOR CITIZENS SALUTED DURING ADDRESS TO MARK 2019 MONTH OF OLDER PERSONS

Basseterre, St. Kitts, September 30, 2019 (SKNIS): Minister of State, for Social Services, the Honourable Wendy Phipps, used a national address to commemorate the 2019 Month of Older Persons in St. Kitts and Nevis, to shine a light on the positive role being performed by caregivers around the Federation.

During the address on Sunday, September 29, Minister Phipps said that any recognition of senior citizens in society cannot be complete without giving due credit to persons who see to their health and wellbeing.

“Whether in a domestic or institutional setting, these caregivers can easily be taken for granted. They consistently render care and attention to our seniors without counting the cost – even at the expense of their own health and the welfare of their families. It is for this reason why the Federal Ministry of Health strongly advocates the imperative of caregivers taking proper care of themselves,” the minister stated.

Minister Phipps added: “All of these special persons, be they homecare officers, nurses, relatives or friends, will be of little help to the seniors for whose care they are responsible if they do not take care of themselves first. As such, the Ministry reminds all caregivers of senior citizens that they should get adequate rest, practice eating a proper diet, have regular medical check-ups and schedule personal time for themselves. Doing otherwise could eventually result in failing health, and premature ageing and death if their own self-maintenance needs are unmet.”

Words of commendation were also expressed for the staff within the Departments of Social Services on both St. Kitts and Nevis for their selfless service and dedication to the nation’s senior citizens.

“We pay tribute, in particular, to our Home Care Officers who continue to render at-home care to our seniors. We also salute the staff of the Cardin Home in St. Kitts and Flamboyant Home in Nevis, along with the staff of the various private sector senior care facilities around the Federation,” Minister Phipps stated. “Gratitude is also extended to the many churches and civic organisations whose membership consistently render meaningful support for the care of our senior citizens, be it in the institutional or domestic settings.”

The Month of Older Persons is being celebrated under the theme: “The Journey to Age Equality” with the hashtag “60+ Counts.” The theme was selected by the United Nations (UN) for the 2019 celebration of the International Day of Older Persons which is observed on October 01, annually.