Lease of life for senior citizens

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By Fredrick Okopie

Seeing the wobbling feet and the feeble hands of the aged people gathered at  Jakande,Isolo in Ejigbo Local Council Development Area of Lagos State by Centre for Happy Elderly People, CHEP, under the leadership of Deaconess (Mrs.) Lilian Jirigho, was a pitiable experience. A country like Nigeria where many of the senior citizens that have spent all their productive years in the service of government or in the private sector could not afford shelter, food and medication.

Speaking to Sunday Vanguard,  Jirigho said,“Centre for Happy Elderly People (CHEP)  is a non-governmental organization established to care for the elderly . This is achieved by building a close relationship with the aged and also making them happy.

“We also help  the neglected, the abandoned and the less privileged”. How does she get fund to carry out the project? The Delta State born nurse said that donations come from people who are touched by the plight of the aged people and attend various programmes lined for the year, most especially the October 1 annual celebration of World Elders Day.

Sunday Vanguard was informed that regular activities are organised by the NGO to keep the senior citizens busy. “CHEP organizes workshops, seminars, etc, on regular basis to educate  the elderly people on various issues and ailments affecting them. This product serves preventive and curative purposes and it is highly information oriented”, Jirigho added.

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