NIA CHARLESTOWN NEVIS (October 03, 2023)- The following is an address by the Honourable Jahnel Nisbett, Minister of Social Development in the Nevis land Administration on the occasion of International Day of Older Persons 2023
International Day of Older Persons, celebrated annually on October 01, provides us with a unique opportunity to reflect on the invaluable contributions made by our seniors to society.
Our senior citizens are the living embodiment of our history, our culture, and our values. They have weathered the storms of life, and their stories serve as a treasure trove of knowledge and inspiration for all generations. They have sacrificed, they have nurtured, and they have paved the way for the progress we enjoy today.
This year’s theme, “Fulfilling the Promises of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights for Older Persons: Across Generations” resonates deeply with the vision of the Department of Social Services.
As we reflect on this theme, it is essential to acknowledge that our society’s fabric is woven with the threads of generations. Our seniors are the guardians of wisdom, culture, and heritage, passing down invaluable lessons from one generation to the next. Their stories are living testaments to resilience, strength, and the power of the human spirit.
Yet, despite the wisdom they offer and the rich tapestry of experiences they possess, older persons often face unique challenges and vulnerabilities. It is our collective responsibility to address these challenges.
As such, we must prioritize several key areas:
Healthcare and Wellness: We have and will continue to ensure accessible and affordable healthcare services that cater to the unique needs of older persons.
Social Inclusion: We will continue to promote programs that encourage
intergenerational connections, foster friendships, and provide seniors with opportunities to engage in their communities actively.
Legal Protections: We will advocate for robust legal protections against elder abuse and exploitation, ensuring that older persons can live free from harm.
Access to Information and Technology: We will continue to invest in digital literacy programs and ensure that older persons can access information and connect with loved ones online.
Cultural Preservation: We must celebrate and preserve the cultural heritage of our seniors. Their stories, traditions, and wisdom are treasures that enrich our society.
Over the course of this month, our department will host a series of events, inclusive of:
Church Service: Eden Brown Church of God 10 a.m. October 01
You Are Not Forgotten (Staff) Let’s Talk VON Radio 7p.m. – October 03
Seniors March (Tie-Dye T-shirts) 9 a.m. October 06
Beach-nic at Oualie Beach October 10
Morning inspiration VON Radio 6 a.m. October 16
Elocution Contest MGR Park 5:30 p.m. October 19
Creativity in Galore Sports Meet –ETW Park 12:30 p.m. October 24
The Bashment – MGR Park 5:30 p.m. November 02
We invite each and every one of you to join us in these endeavors, because it is only by working together, across generations, that we can fulfill the promises of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights for Older Persons.
As we embark on this month of activities, let us remember that honoring our seniors is not just a one-day affair. It is a continuous commitment to building an inclusive society. The quality of a society is measured by how it treats its most vulnerable members.
Our seniors have given so much to us, and it is our duty to ensure they can age with respect, grace and dignity, and where the wisdom of one generation paves the way for the next.
It is my pleasure to declare International Month for Older Persons officially open!