“I expect to pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do, or any kindness or abilities that I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer it or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.”
– William Penn
8th Oct 2011 – One such memorable day when I & some of my friend’s decided to undertake a small social initiative as a part of our CSR activity by organizing a visit to “St Anthony’s Old Age Home” in Bandra West, Mumbai
As it was also one of my friend’s birthday that day, we had planned to celebrate it in a special way and what better way than to celebrate it with those people who had been sacked out of their own house by their own children.
We all assembled at the venue at 8:45 AM . Some of us went ahead to collect the snacks & the cakes which we had ordered the previous day while others decided to come directly at the Old Age Home.
As soon as we entered the home we all got wrapped up in the tranquility surrounding the home. We met the Two Elderly Sisters – who were the Caretakers of the home. They told us that there are in all 57 elderly old women in the home and gave some insights about them. Then she led us to a big hall where there were some 20-25 old inmates who welcomed us warmly with all their love and affection. The care taker then introduced us to them.
Then all the elderly women started singing the “Happy Birthday Song” for our friend and the cake cutting ceremony began. The staff distributed cakes and snacks to everyone which we had taken along with us. Meanwhile we went to meet the remaining people upstairs. They too sang the “Happy Birthday Song” for our friend and again the cake cutting ceremony took place. We then sang songs along with the elderly people and spoke with them for next 30-45 mins. As we started our conversation Some got very emotional and shared their sufferings with us, Some shared their experiences of their youth time.
We then requested everyone to assemble at the main hall as we had planned to entertain them by organizing a game of “HOUSIE”. It was real fun to see the elderly old women laughing and playing housie with so much child like enthusiasm. Their eyes were fixed on us – may be they were expecting something from us that they didn’t have from their loved ones. We then distributed prizes to the Winners of the Housie Game. We felt really happy seeing all of them smile. Then the time came for us to leave, While leaving everyone gave their blessings and hugged us and also thanked us for spending quality time with them. We too thanked them for allowing us to spend our time with them & for loving us so much. We promised them that we would visit them again soon. As we were leaving as a small token of remembrance we handovered a small gift to the sister and requested her to distribute it to all.
And finally I left the home with a heavy heart thinking that , Aren’t we all interlinked to our society? . Let’s do something good and spread it, so that people may imitate it. Let us teach our younger generation to respect and listen to elders and spread the message to everyone not to send their Old Parents to the Old Age Home. They deserve much more love and respect. Remember, Nobody can do everything, but everyone can do something!