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  • Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Derrick Kellier, has lauded the country’s senior citizens for their invaluable contribution to nation building.
  • Minister Kellier was speaking at the media launch of Senior Citizens’ Week 2014 held yesterday (September 23), at the National Council for Senior Citizens (NCSC), Secretariat in Kingston.
  • Minister Kellier said the theme provides an opportunity to not only recognize and honour elder citizens, “but also to examine ways to improve the quality of their lives and determine how to engage their potential into the development process.”

Minister of Labour and Social Security, Hon. Derrick Kellier, has lauded the country’s senior citizens for their invaluable contribution to nation building.

“The prosperity, progress, growth and gains we enjoy today have been made possible through the tremendous efforts and sacrifices of our seniors and elders in communities across the island,” he stated.

Minister Kellier was speaking at the media launch of Senior Citizens’ Week 2014 held yesterday (September 23), at the National Council for Senior Citizens (NCSC), Secretariat in Kingston.

The week, from September 28-October 4, will be observed under the theme: ‘Active Ageing through a Healthy Lifestyle’.

Minister Kellier said the theme provides an opportunity to not only recognize and honour elder citizens, “but also to examine ways to improve the quality of their lives and determine how to engage their potential into the development process.”

As such, he is encouraging them to volunteer in schools and participate in community activities so as to pass on life lessons about sacrifice, endurance, self-reliance and independence.

“During this Senior Citizens’ Week, we will be looking to Jamaica’s seniors to share their survival lessons, drawing on their wisdom, experience, accomplishment and knowledge for future growth,” Minister Kellier said.

“There are important principles we can learn from our elders about human rights, respect, dignity and caring for one another,” he noted further.

 

Mr. Kellier said the Ministry, through the NCSC, continues to promote activities such as skills training and workshops, feeding programmes, cultural days and sports events, all of which will aid seniors in maintaining happy and healthy lifestyles.

He challenged private sector companies, non-government organizations, as well as the church and faith-based entities to “step to the fore in providing service and relief,” to seniors facing challenges.

Minister Kellier also informed that Ministry, and related agencies, will be conducting a review of the 1997 National Policy for Senior Citizens, to develop contemporary and appropriate responses and strategies to address the current demands of the elderly population.

He used the opportunity of the launch to again urge Jamaicans to contribute to the National Insurance Scheme (NIS).

“Do not wait until you reach retirement age. Once you are working, you must get involved in the National Insurance Scheme because it will redound to your benefit in your senior years,” he pointed out.