The growth of the aged population which is either dependent on the young or unemployed or working for food during the evening years of their life is a challenge to the social security systems in India. Unlike in other countries, elders in India are left to fend for themselves. For daily wage earners or low income groups, meeting daily requirements itself is a challenge, let alone saving for their sunset years.
Lack or absence of financial independence creates a stressful life and invites problems including physical and mental health issues. For instance, domestic problems in an extended family system can worsen the problems of a financially-destitute senior citizen. Furthermore, if the children are struggling in a similar state of poverty, the senior citizen gets tagged as being an added burden on the family.
Loneliness is the other constant worry that accompanies elders with financial problems. Elders long for companionship with other like-minded elders who can understand their situation and with whom they can confide in. The need for belongingness is significantly seen in these elders.
WHAT WE DO: Sandhya Kirana is a noble initiative by Nightingales Medical Trust to rehabilitate elders who are economically challenged.
A day care centre for the elderly from the lower socio-economic strata, the primary focus is to help elders earn an income and live a life of dignity with access to adequate health care. The highlight of the centre is the strong emotional attachment that the elders develop amongst them.
Nightingales Sandhya Kirana at Kothanur currently has more than 30 elderly attending the centre on a regular basis.
All services provided here are free of cost.
SERVICES AT SANDHYA KIRANA
Meals – Most of the elders who join Sandhya Kirana come in with health problems indicative of malnutrition or related deficiencies. The elders are provided with nutritional breakfast, milk, lunch and evening snacks to overcome these health issues.
Health and Hygiene – Yoga, fitness programs and weekly medical check-ups are conducted. Periodically health camps like cataract camp, cancer detection camp, cardiac camps are conducted and health talks are organized.
Skill Development and Income Generation - Elders attending the centre are taught to make handmade products that can be sold and can help them to earn a livelihood. Newspaper covers, candles, eco-friendly plates, gift bags, mats and decorative items are some of the products made by the elderly here.
Recreation – Music, TV, outings and fun events are organized through volunteers for the elderly.
My mood used to be off most of the time before I came to this place. My son-in-law expired sometime back and I am very disturbed by it. In this center, I am taken care of very well and being here helps me forget my worries. Ms. Merciline treats me like her own child and provides the support that I need. I do not miss a single day coming here because I find it soothing here.
I was feeling very ill before I came in here. After I came here, my illness seems to have disappeared. I love the social interactions I have over here. I feel light at heart every time I am here. My family has noticed significant health improvements after I joined the center. I was diagnosed with high blood sugar when I joined the center and I have been given medication accordingly.
Sandhya Kirana is a place where old people enjoy themselves by eating, playing, working together in one place where they are treated equally. They are loved by the staff who take care of them. Thank you one and all for all the good deeds.
Daughter of Roseline, a member of our SK-Kothanur Centre
All my sons and daughters-in-law go to work and I felt very lonely at home. There was no one to take care of my needs at home and I was dejected. I also slipped hurt my knee which added to the trouble. At the center, I am very happy to be with like-minded people; I love talking to them. I thank God everyday for bringing me here. My son is also very happy to see me improve from a physical and mental perspective. He feels that I am more fit and active after joining the center and is very happy to see the improvement in me.
I was informed about this place by a close relative. I first thought that this was a school and did not want to come here. But when I saw this place I fell in love with it. I feel so happy that I gets paid for the work I do. I have never stepped out of the house for earning an income until now and I feel so empowered to get paid for the work I does. I love working here and interacting with other people here. My daughter used to feel sad about me being aloof and lonely all the time. Now, she feels happy to see a ‘Happy Rosaline’. It feels like a big family here.
There are many opportunities where you as an individual or a corporate team can touch the lives of the elders at this Centre.
Make a Difference in the lives of the Elders at Nightingales Sandhya Kirana. As a not-for-profit organization, NMT depends on socially conscious persons like you to support the work done at Nightingales Sandhya Kirana
Your contributions can help feed the elderly and organize medical camps for the elders here. You can also donate newspapers and other needs.