Axios Senior Citizens Foundation, an NGO, has advised senior citizens to be health conscious, if they desire to live long.
Mr Aliyu Habibu, a member, Board of Trustees of the foundation, gave this advice during a medical outreach for senior citizens at Kubwa PW axis, a suburb of Abuja, Federal Capital Teritory (FCT), on Saturday.
Habibu said that the foundation was set up due to the fact that medical care was not easily accessible for the elderly.
He explained that the NGO was establised to bridge the gap between what government could afford for the senior citizens and what they were lacking.
“Our main role here today is to get people to be conscious of their health.
“What to do especially on the sickness they don’t understand, they need to go to the hospital, that is part of what we are here to tell them.
“We need to bridge the gab between what government can afford and what is lacking, that is the main purpose of setting up this foundation to look at the elderly.
“I know it is a bit different in Nigeria because we look after our elderly, but in the western world, they don’t actually do that, the government takes over as soon as the elderly get to a certain age when they can no longer look after themselves.
“The government takes over and start looking after the elderly ones and pay those people who do this job for them.
“Here in Nigeria, there are a lot of elderly people who have no access to medical care facilities.
“These elders are too old, some of them cannot afford the cost of the medical care. We’ll want to bridge that gap, so we set up this foundation principally targeted at the elderly in a community.
“I am not saying there is no hospital, but access to medical facilities are not just answerable for these elderly people,” he said.
Habibu added that the NGO invite elderly people in any community it intended to conduct medical outreach to enable them meet specialist doctors working for the organisation.
According to him, various health tests, such as high blood pressure, sugar level test, urine test and eye test, are provided by the NGO.
He said that the organisation recommended exercise for the elderly where necessary, depending on the nature of sickness discovered in the body of individuals.
Habibu said that he was impressed with the turnout of people for the medical outreach since it began 9 a.m, adding that those who are not senior citizens also benefitted from the exercise.
He therefore advised the elderly to always eat vegetables and carry out exercises such as gymn, long walk and indoor exercise, to always keep fit.
According to him, the senior citizens must always pay attention to the type of food they should be eating and that they must reduce sugar, salt and maggi intake, as well as chunk meat at their age.
Some of the elderly people posed for photograph
Mr Abdulraqib Jegede, the Administrative Secretary of the NGO, called on senior citizens to come and register with the organisation.
He said that the NGO was out to ease the pains felt by the elderly especially retirees, and to bring them out from their isolation, adding that a lot of elders have stayed too long in isolation.
“When you go back to some offices, you will still see some elderly people who are very old and are still in services, not because of the money but they are afraid of after service of what is next to do.
“If you look at Nigeria today after retirement that is all, they go home and seat, so we are trying to re-engage the elderly people back to the society.
“Most elderly people are afraid of the depression outside there after services, so my advice for them is to get registered with this foundation, we have our website which is still on precessing.
“We have our phone number 08066227165, this phone number is active so they can call, we also have our E-mail [email protected], where citizens can send in messages.
“Our twitter is “@axiosscf22, Instagram is “ascfoundation21″ and our Facebook is @ascfoundation 21”, all these are channels where we can be reached.
“Our office address is No. A10B, Platinum Mega Mall/Plaza, Jahi, Abuja,” he said.
Jegede disclosed that the NGO would soon open a club, in form of adult creche, where elderly citizens would come together to socialise with each other, interact and have fun.
He said that the organisation was working on taking out depression amongst senior citizens, adding that the project will be taken to other states. (NAN)