4U2K ELDERLY ABUSE AWARENESS !

Irshad JACKARIA

Elderly Abuse - Beware !

In today's vibrant Mauritian society, many parents judge their own success by the achievement of their children. It is about how well or how early he/she masters a smartphone and a tablet, how fluently he/she talks English or French and his/her academic results. The reverse of this coin is an increase in the number of elderly homes around the island, rise in lonely living parents and a decrease in our happiness index.

At Knowledge of the ART, we reckon that in tomorrow's ageing Mauritian population, children will have to judge part of their own success by the tranquility and serenity of their parents. It will be how mobile their parents are in their later years, how much love and support that their parents are receiving from their sons and daughter-in-laws, and from their daughters and son-in-laws, as well as their parents financial well-being.

On the 15th June of every year, the world celebrates the Elder Abuse Awareness day. The theme for 2017 is about preventing financial and material exploitation, by sensitising the population about this type of abuse, and coming up with ways and means to ensure the participation of older adults themselves in ending victimisation. As such, we believe that, in addition to organising excursions, retro dancing and entertainment for the elders, more emphasis should be made in educating and empowering them to:

  • protect their life-time savings and assets from forced heirs/heiresses.
  • use their lump sum, pension and retirement funds diligently, especially in our hyper competitive commercial environment.
  • invest their excess funds in a way that respects their unique circumstances.
  • understand the current legal and fiscal implications for the management of their finances.
  • grasp the different legislative protection at their disposal, in case of financial abuse.

And, our simple recommendations to every parent out there are to:

  • teach your child about true care, respect towards the elderly since their tender age.
  • inculcate character ethics, with focus on characteristics like honesty, justice, integrity and patience.
  • show them not only to do the right things, but to do it for the right reasons.
  • present them with a vision of life that there are many roads to success, and that the most direct and most traveled ones are not necessarily the better ones.