NGOs nationwide are contributing vigorously to administer a developed and safe environment for those aged sixty or above. Since many ailing parents in the elder years are under constant threat of being neglected, physically abused or economically stripped, such social work organisations are putting their best efforts to identify and help them and provide the best senior citizen health care services.
104 million people in India have aged 60 or above and 90 percent of them lack social security which includes no pensions, no gratuity, etc. As per reports, 72 percent of the elder population, irrespective of their economic status, suffer physical abuse at home. These facts highlight just one thing; the elderly population in our country are in dire need of help. Senior Citizen healthcare in India has progressed over the decades but there is a lot of work that needs to be done. The contribution by NGOs has gradually increased as they have taken some imperative steps to improve the condition of the suffering elders. Let us see how:
Voicing the rights of senior citizens
Whether elderly persons live in joint or nuclear families, the fear of neglect and abuse have been reported by many. NGOs constantly promote the rights, well-being and individuality of senior citizens via education, advocacy and action. They have actively participated in fighting legal cases for them, providing them shelter, helping them reclaim their economic statuses to name some.
Setting up Old age homes
Old age homes have been set up to provide shelter to senior citizens who have been forced out of their houses. Such homes have been set up to make the old people recipients of special medical treatment and intensive caring for the elderly, timely well-balanced meals, fitness and yoga sessions to lead a healthy life and so on. They are under constant observation by appointed nurses and caretakers who, 24×7, ensure their comfort and welfare.
Talking to a veteran about the grievances an elderly person faces helps a lot. There are increased chances for aged people to develop some anomalies like mental health issues or increased substance abuse that can be decreased or sorted out by various sessions of counselling. Any unnatural behavioural patterns can be altered by continuous counselling sessions and can bring relief from acute stress the person is facing.
Education is important for both the youngest and the older members of the family as it creates awareness among people. Awareness brings a sea of change in people especially for those who live separately from children like what steps to take when long tenures of living alone in the old age might occur. This can be done only when the individuals receive the right education. If a person who gets to know an incident of abuse towards an elderly person in his neighbourhood or among his/her relatives, he/she will have the prior knowledge on how to take the next step and save the tormented person from facing further damage.
Organisations who solely run senior care services are doing a phenomenal job to make the life of the suffering old individuals more breathable. The statistics of elderly abuse facing constant threats and abuse is quite staggering and shocking as mentioned initially. To make it a safer environment for the senior citizens, we at personal levels should also contribute jointly with such organisations to tackle these aforementioned circumstances.
Have you ever seen someone being neglected by their heirs once they turn older? If yes, what steps did you take to stop the situation?