International Day of Older Persons marked

| 10/10/2018
CNS Local Life

(L-R) Older Persons Month Ambassadors Percival Whittaker, Mexi-Ann Grant, Pastor Marquiss McLaughlin and Alex Johnson with Acting Governor Franz Manderson

(CNS Local Life): Older Persons Month was launched with a celebration of International Day of Older Persons on Monday, 1 October, and featured two seminars organised by the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). The event, held at the Family Life Centre, on Monday, 1 October, included speakers reflecting on the month’s theme, “Respecting the Wisdom and Value of Older People”.

Among those speaking at the event were Acting Governor Franz Manderson, Chief Officer for Community Affairs Teresa Echenique, DCFS Director Felicia Robinson and MLA Kenneth Bryan.

Reinforcing the month’s theme of “Respecting the Wisdom and Value of Older People,” each speaker reflected on the tremendous determination, sacrifices and knowledge base of local senior citizens while encouraging the community to draw on these resources in everyday life, stated a press release.

The event attracted 250 older people including 10 seniors from Cayman Brac. Pastor Marquiss McLaughlin, one of the 2018 Older Persons Month Ambassadors, gave the welcome prayer and a rendition of the National Song was delivered by Red Bay Primary School student Liana Wilks. Rupert Ackermon played two devotional songs on his guitar.

Students from Cayman Academy’s reception class entertained the audience with two songs, accompanied by their teachers and a fellow student on the drums.

CNS Local Life

Students from Cayman Academy’s reception class performing at the event

The keynote speaker, Maureen Cubbon, was introduced as the award-winning chef and founder of local food movement BestLife. She presented the audience with several ideas on backyard farming and championed the use of local produce for sustaining a healthy lifestyle. Cubbon also gave an on-stage cooking demonstration using local foods and provided attendees with a taster of her sweet potato and black bean vegetable hash.

One of the highlights of the event was the introduction of the Older Persons’ Month Ambassadors, said the press release. DCFS Director Robinson explained that the six people were chosen in recognition of their exemplary service and leadership within their districts, especially in assisting older people.

A seminar on advanced care planning, conducted by attorney Natasha Bodden of Sonia Bush and Associates, also attracted an audience, stated the release. The comprehensive presentation covered many areas including giving instructions regarding their future personal care and estate management.

Before lunch, attendees had the opportunity to mix and mingle at the information booths set up by various service providers including Hazard Management Cayman Islands, the Pines Retirement Home, Council for Older Persons, Caring Hands Cayman, Family Resource Centre/Legal Befrienders and the Public Service Pensions Board.

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