|Habitat Debate - Vol. 5 - No. 2 - 1999 - Construction and Architecture (HABITAT, 1999, 60 p.)|
It was so refreshing to read Dianne Davis' article Older Persons: An Untapped Resource (Habitat Debate, Vol. 4, No. 4). How often we fail to realize that human resources are every nation's greatest wealth. And what better human resources than the contribution of hands and minds of those people with years of valuable experience to their name. Surely older persons should not be viewed as a problem, but as a resource, which when tapped properly could well be a solution to the diverse problems our societies face.
Government agencies and the private sector involved in human development should seriously consider the examples of programmes involving the elderly which were enumerated by Ms. Davis. Perhaps they could also consider developing programmes geared towards preparing people for old age.
Growing old does not mean turning into a victim or being resigned to simply receiving a pension. Ageing does not mean being useless. All of us - young and old - may need to review our attitude and our focus: Older persons continue to be the hope of the future. We salute them in this International Year of the Elderly!
University of the
Quezon City, Philippines
It was a real pleasure to receive the two issues of Habitat Debate Vol 4 Nos. 3 and 4. These very rich documents, with an exceptional dimension, appear at a time when habitat policies, particularly in African cities, occupy a place of great importance. My compliments on their editorial quality.
This is to acknowledge the receipt of Habitat Debate Vol. 4 Nos. 3 and 4. I always read the contents with great interest because many of the issues raised relate closely to my work with urban poor communities.
Community Organizers Multiversity
Quezon City, Philippines
My sincere thanks to Ms. D. Davis for her far-sighted article, Older persons: An Untapped Resource published in Habitat Debate, Vol. 4 No. 4, 1998.
It is true that when one attains the age of 58, 60 or 70, one does not cease to be creative. Age has nothing to do with creativity in any field of human endeavour. It is more or less the function of attitude towards life, soceity and fellow human beings. As such, members of the greying society do not essentially constitute the debit side of the ledger, but are part and parcel of the credit side, since they are a store-house of varied experience and expertise.
Perhaps the world body would like to draw up a panel of such persons incorporating their qualifications, experiences, etc. and may be in a position to ask them to volunteer their services, if and when required, for the benefit of needy communities. This might also serve as food for thought for national governments and they may also consider to follow suit in due course.
Greetings from South Africa! As a Peace Corps Volunteer serving in this amazing country, I am writing to thank you for your excellent publication.
I am one of 35 Americans in the second-ever group to serve since the end of Apartheid and the beginning of representative democrary. As Thabo Mbeki steps into the giant shoes of Nelson Mandela, there is a renewed spirit of nation-building - especially within the schools. The Peace Corps is working with primary school teachers in rural Mpumalanga and Northern Provinces to assist with implementation of a new curriculum, as well as to further understanding and respect between all peoples. As you may know, South Africa is an odd, often disconcerting blend of the First and Third Worlds, and both we and the people we work with have hugely varying degrees of access to information. Your publication helps me, as a relatively isolated volunteer, to keep abreast of issues in the larger world. My fellow teachers and friends enjoy this glimpse outside as well.
Peace Corps Volunteer
Sobhuza Public School
Mpumalanga, South Africa
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