Older persons "walk" for unity and peace
Quezon City (6 October) -- Despite the aftermath of typhoon “Milenyo,” more than 2,000 older persons from the 17 Metro Manila chapters of the Federation of Senior Citizens Associations of the Philippines (FSCAP) and the Coalition of Services of the Elderly (COSE) joined the “Walk for Life” on October 1 at Rajah Sulayman Plaza, Roxas Blvd., Manila.
During the “walk,” the older persons, aged 60 years old and above, were dressed in colorful attires and displayed their respective banners. Some of the old women wore high-heeled shoes and glamorous gowns. The route was from Luneta (in front of Rizal monument) to Rajah Sulayman Plaza in less than one hour.
The activity marked the start of the “Elderly Filipino Week” (EFW) or “Linggo ng Katandaang Pilipino” with the theme, “Nakatatanda: Kaagapay sa Pagkakaisa at Kapayapaan.”
Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Esperanza I. Cabral said the celebration is in line with Presidential Proclamation 470 signed on September 2004 declaring every first week of October as “Elderly Filipino Week.” It aims to promote the rights and well-being of about 5.7 million older persons or 6.9 percent of the total 84 million Philippine population.
DSWD Undersecretary Alicia R. Bala, who represented Secretary Cabral during the program after the “walk” said the government continues to enforce laws that will benefit the millions of our older persons. Undersecretary Bala added that the walk is a symbol of unity among the older persons. “The older persons provide cultural continuity to our country’s customs and traditions,” she added.
Representatives from different national government agencies and non-government organizations involved in older persons’ welfare also attended the “walk.”
The other activities lined up by the national steering committee during the week-long celebration are: visit of the older persons to the visitorless, indigent, sick and old (VISO) persons of the National Bilibid Prisons (NBP) and the Correctional Institute for Women in Mandaluyong on October 3 and 7, respectively. The wards will be provided with medical services in coordination with the concerned local government units.
Various groups of the senior citizens in the National Capital Region will undertake a ‘Dalaw Kalinga’ tomorrow, October 4, where they will share gifts and socialize with their fellow older persons in Golden Acres, Lualhati ng Maynila and Hospicio de San Jose.
The 10 outstanding older persons who have contributed or have served the community will be recognized during the “Ulirang Nakatatanda Awards” on October 8 (Sunday), 2:00 p.m. at the St. Paul’s College Auditorium in Quezon City.
The members of the EFW national steering committee are the Department of Health (DOH); Department of Education (DepEd); Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG); Philippine Information Agency (PIA); Department of Finance (DOF); Metro Manila Development Authority (MMDA); Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC); Coalition of Services of the Elderly (COSE); Federation of Senior Citizen’s Association of the Philippines (FSCAP); UP-Population Institute; Office of Senior Citizens Affairs (OSCA)-Manila; and the Alliance of Retired Postal Employees and Senior Citizens, Inc. (ARPES).
Other national government agencies, local government units, non-government organizations, and other sectors are also conducting similar activities to mark the nationwide event. (DSWD) [top]