Haniff Charles, Community Development Officer
|By: (SKNIS), Press ReleaseBasseterre, St. Kitts, March 31, 2021 (SKNIS): Seniors in St. Kitts will be given the opportunity to stay active, mingle with each other, interact with the younger generation, and pass on their knowledge when the Department of Community Development and Social Services re-introduces the ‘Golden Years Club’.|
Haniff Charles, Community Development Officer and Secretary on the Seniors Enrichment Programme Committee said that it is extremely important to have the Golden Years Club reestablished in the Federation.
“We realize the importance of having the seniors going out to prevent isolation, psychosocial issues… and we really want our seniors to go out and associate, mingle with others, and so the reestablishment of the Golden Years Club is one of the projects that we are working on this year,” said Mr. Charles during his March 31 appearance on ‘Working for You’. “There will be clubs in the various communities… utilizing the community centres, of course, as that recreational facility for them.”
Mr. Charles briefly explained the aim of the Club, noting what takes places in other Golden Years Clubs globally.
“In the bigger cities, they would have their programme where they have a bus going around taking the older persons to a recreational facility and they will do what they have to do, enjoy the games… do things that they have to do and then at the end of the day they would take them back,” he said, adding that this is repeated when necessary.
According to information from https://www.socialservices.gov.kn/, the Golden Years Club was established in St. Paul’s in 2004 as a recreational group and training programme for older persons. Funded by the Canadian Caribbean Initiative, the Golden Years Club provided seniors with the opportunity to socialize and partake in exercise classes and stimulating activities, such as arts and craft, healthy meal preparation, and basic computer classes.
After the St. Pauls’ group was established, a second Club was formed in Cayon in 2006, incorporating and training seniors in that community, as well as several older persons who had been made redundant by the closure of the Sugar Factory in 2005.