Leviticus 19:32 New Living Translation (NLT) Stand up in the presence of the elderly, and show respect for the aged. Fear your God. I am the Lord.
Our senior citizens are the pillars of our communities because they’re filled with wisdom and valuable life skills which we can use to our benefit. Quite often, they are overlooked, but it is important to acknowledge our senior citizens and the contribution that they have made in our society.
According to Ruth Makandiwa; the Founder and Visionary of Agape Family Care, “Old age is a sensitive phase therefore elderly people require absolute care and comfort to lead a healthy life without worries and anxiety.”
Established in 1986, Zimbabwe Hope Old People’s Home is a refuge for the elderly located in Gatsi, Honde Valley.
The elderly residents include people abandoned by their families, or those thrown out of their homes following ownership disputes whilst others were destitutes and picked up from the streets and others are of foreign origin with no known relatives. Many of the foreign residents came to Zimbabwe in the 1970s to seek employment and they never went back home.
When the Mutare City Agape Family Care Team visited the Home they were met with a somber environment that required some liveliness. Some of the elderly people conversed amongst themselves as they hid from blazing sun rays under tree shades while some could be seen wandering aimlessly muttering to themselves. Looking at these senior citizens one could see that their faces are marked with wrinkles of old age; which tell stories of love and laughter, suffering and tears. Sadly some of the elderly residents cannot even remember their age as they lost contact with their families. Some of the elderly are deaf whilst others are blind.
Speaking to the Matron the Agape Family Care Team gathered that the Zimbabwe Hope Old People’s Home is not able to adequately provide food for the elderly therefore they are forced to skip meals and at worst go a day without eating. She also stated the constraints that they have when it comes to administrative funding, food provisions and money to get full time staff to look after the elderly.
After having taken a tour of the Home the Mutare City Agape Family Care Team extended love from Ruth Makandiwa by donating New Bedding, Bed Linen, Groceries, Clothing, Kitchen Utensils and Sanitary Wares.