CELEBRATION OF WORLDWIDE AGING DAY, Sept 2009
Noble Cause Elder Care and Support was renewed by the government to continue working for the next three years. After much paperwork and many trips to the offices, General Manager Samson Betru received the new certificate – congratulations!
Training for volunteer health care students and teachers was conducted by Samson Betru. These volunteers are preparing to assist with complete assessments – the goal is a home visit to each of the elders enrolled in NCECS. With our staff and volunteers, we visited about 40 of the elders in the past in their homes. With these volunteers we plan to visit many more making an evaluation of the safety of their environment and home, their health status and their needs, Volunteers will teach family members and elders methods of prevention such as eye problems.
In 2009 NCECS coordinated the Eye Campaign for the other participants such as Help Age International and Debra Berhan Hospital. Following screening of165 elders , finished in three days as planned, referrals and teaching, then surgery for 21 (cataracts removed). Now they see well enough to care for themselves, work and care for their family members. The majority of the NCECS members had never visited a clinic or been seen by a health care provider
Help Age International Ethiopia conducted a one week training on advocacy and elder rights in December 09. This is being followed by plans to conduct a training in the Kebele at the local level as soon as funding can be obtained.
CALL to ACTION – there is time to act. Volunteer with us for these important activities. Please donate!
On September 19, 2009 Noble Cause Elder Care and Support hosted the Second Annual Celebration of Worldwide Ageing Day in Andtid and Gumas Ogedin, 170 Kilometers north of Addis Ababa. The program began with the Opening Ceremony on the land of NCECS, with our unfinished building behind the speaker, Alison Rusinow, Country Director of HelpAge Ethiopia.
Along with banners declaring in Amharic and English “AGE DEMANDS ACTION”; two hundred elders and community members marched up the road to the beautiful cliff-side location where last year’s celebration was held. In addition to speeches by Samson Betru, NCECS General Manager, NCECS Committee members, members of the community, the elders themselves spoke out describing their problems and thanking Samson for the awareness and assistance that NCECS has brought to the community.
Youth from Addis Ababa provided music and dancing and this year the elders danced as well. Four horses decorated in traditional cloths appeared to the cheers of the crowd. An award was given. Finally, the NCECS Committee served food (mutton and enjera) as well as soft drinks and tea to everyone.
Guests at this year’s event included the family of the HelpAge Ethiopia country director, a nurse teacher and two other nurses (one from the NCECS Board) as well as Samson’s family members, Yemeneshu (mother) and Misiker (brother, videographer). Special appreciation goes to HelpAge Ethiopia, to the NCECS Committee, selected Board Members and to Samson (who worked tirelessly to organize and coordinate) as well as Samson’s family and friends.
Working together, priority is now going to the eye problems of so many of the elders. An Eye Campaign is planned in the near future. Volunteers to screen the elders’ eye problems in their area are needed. These volunteers will be trained prior to the screening. Coordination of transport, housing, food and other arrangements will require additional volunteers. As soon as the date for the Eye Campaign is determined, it will be posted on this web site.
Come to Ethiopia. Walk with NCECS. Walk with the elders. You will be rewarded in ways you never knew.
Greetings to the friends, old and new ones, of NCECS. Wherever you are in this wide world, we know you are thinking of the elders and their needs. We now have official messages to share with you (though it has taken a long time because we have passed through many challenges).
* NCECS General Assembly and Board meeting approved the Annual Report, including the Financial Report (everyone was surprised how much work had been done without any major donor or grant).
* To make a better bridge to the elders, more stakeholders were identified and there is an increase in the number of Board of Directors members.
* A local committee was established and the members are showing ownership and strength.
* Documentation of the activities – a source of information that can be used for presentations when seeking funds.
* Now 150 elders’ names are on the list and we want to identify their unique needs/problems.
* Land, the first small building is under construction.
* Signboard is prepared and ready to take to the north. See photo.
* Procedures are paving the way for local and international volunteers.
All of the above were essential to proceed with the work and to obtain funding. There are procedures and details of the activities; email and ask, we will gladly share more information with you.
* Assessment of elders – this group activity will use an unlimited number of volunteers to visit each elder in their own home, including those who are bedridden.
* Distributing warm clothing – already collected and continuing to be collected, this needs an organized distribution to match each elder’s needs (clothing, hat, scarf, shoes, blanket, etc.)
* Meeting sanitation/hygiene educational needs
* To educate the elders and their families on the relationship between living conditions and illness (for example eye problems from poor hygiene and indoor fires using cow manure for fuel).
* To inform on the issue of deforestation and provide an alternative fuel source (solar).
* Complete the building already begun – needs walls, doors, windows and local furniture. Essential for housing volunteers.
* Celebrate worldwide Aging Day on September 12, 2009. Different guests expected to participate, very special day for the elders and the community. This is the second annual celebration.
Since all the activities need funds and man powers, we would like to invite you to help in any way possible.
By Samson Betru, General Manager
Team activity with two volunteers from the US will focus on developing the NCECS local site, educating the families of the elders with limited mobility and providing donations of warm clothes and some shoes. One of the volunteers, Sharon Curry, requested warm scarves and hats from her church in the US and we expect those to arrive in time for the planned Team activity.
January – April, 2009
Frequent trips to the project area and discussions with community leaders, brings the work of NCECS into the community where the land donated by the government is being developed. Watch for our report of the next Team activity, along with photos. Board meetings are under way to complete the Annual Report for 2007-2008. This will be followed by a General Assembly meeting – watch for a report here on our Web Site.