8 June 2022
World Elderly Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD) is commemorated on 15 June where communities around the world get together to raise awareness of elderly abuse.
It is hard to imagine someone harming an elderly person, however it is globally known that elderly abuse is an issue. While St Helena is a small community, we cannot say that we are an exception.
What is elderly abuse?
‘Elderly abuse’ is defined as ‘an intentional act or failure to act that causes or creates a risk of harm to an older adult’. Elderly abuse can take many forms such as, neglect, emotional, physical and financial abuse, as well as abandonment.
This year’s theme is ‘Rights Don’t Get Old’.
We all have rights:
- Rights to choice, respect and dignity
- Rights to having an active voice in society
- Rights to happiness and quality of life
- Rights to being safe.
Elderly persons deserve and are entitled to human rights as well. We all deserve to be happy and healthy and live a life free of abuse, yet older people can be mistreated.
Elderly Abuse can be prevented and this depends entirely on us. We are the ones who have the power to prevent abuse and action lies within our hands. As a community we need to work together and use our voices to speak up if we know of an elderly person who is being mistreated.
On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, let us stand up for the Human Rights of our elderly and show our support for the people who have contributed to the society we now enjoy.
As a community let’s get involved, think, dress and display purple as the colour signifies dignity. Wear purple, light it up purple, decorate your place with purple balloons, whatever you can do just ‘Go Purple’ in honour of our elderly.
Think about how we can support our elders to enjoy life and be valued citizens of our community:
- Where possible, lend a helping hand
- Pick up the phone for a friendly chat
- Visit and chat over a cup of tea
- Safeguard and protect our elders
- Donate to a charity supporting our elderly, or support an older person to access the community.
Little things could have a big impact.
So let’s not just stand by but ‘Stand Up’ for our Elders, because our Elders Matter!
#StHelena #AltogetherSafer #WEAAD
8 June 2022