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City gives elderly a special Women’s Month treatment Print E-mail
24 August 2017

Monday August 21 was a special day for more than 300 residents of Reuven Old Age Home in Turffontein in Region F, southern Johannesburg.

This was the day when the City of Johannesburg threw a big party for the senior citizens to celebrate the 61st anniversary of Women’s Month in recognition of 9 August 1956 when thousands of women marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria to demand equal rights and justice.

The City’s Section 79 Committees Chair of Chairs, Cllr Alex Christians – who was accompanied by a high-profile City entourage, including Member of the Mayoral Committee for Health and Social Development Cllr Mpho Phalatse, four chairpersons of Section 79 committees and several Region F councillors – hosted the festivities.

The elderly were treated to tea, coffee and sandwiches as the Johannesburg Metro Police Department’s brass band, which has in its short history endeared itself to multiple audiences, provided the musical backdrop, belting out golden oldies such as Pata Pata and Meadowlands as well as popular gospel songs.

The senior citizens were also given exercise tips by City official Cleone Carter-Harris and hand, neck and shoulder massages by students from the University of Johannesburg.

“I didn’t realise they were going to offer massages. It was really nice,” said elated 73-year old Erica Becker.

Health workers were also on hand to check their blood pressure, cholesterol and insulin levels.

Cllr Phalatse encouraged the senior citizens to register for the City’s Expanded Social Package (ESP), an improved safety net for the indigent. Cllr Christians urged the elderly to approach public representatives should they need assistance on any municipal-related issue.

“Our role is to ensure that the executive does its job. We oversee the governance of the City,” Cllr Christians said.

Reuven Old Age Home houses 320 elderly men and women.

“I moved here nine years ago from Meadowlands,” said 71-year-old Caroline Ngoasheng. “I like helping out in the office and today in the kitchen. This is very nice, I’m happy they are hosting this even for us. This is a lonely place, especially at night when you are all by yourself in your flat. So you have to keep busy during the day.

“I volunteer in a group of five who crotchet. Last month we donated 90 scarves and beanies to the Adelaide Tambo Home in Soweto for Mandela Day. We have to plough back but we need donations of wool so we can do more. I play bowls at the Turffontein Bowling Club,” she said.

Eighty-one-year-old Belinda Nkosi, formerly of Vosloorus on the East Rand, has been at the home since 1994. She said of her 10 children only three were still alive.

“I worked for the municipality for 30 years. Now I am being taken good care of here. To keep busy, I help with the cleaning. Every Sunday I go to Rhema Church, which I have been a member of for 32 years,” she said with a twinkle in her eye.

At the end of the event, the elderly were handed small bags with vegetables, fruit and juice. Cllr Christian and his entourage launched a vegetable garden, which the Johannesburg City Parks & Zoo will help to maintain.


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Last Updated on 24 August 2017