South West CDC launches active ageing bursary
The South West Community Development Council has launched a $600,000 active ageing bursary scheme to promote active ageing, lifelong learning and social integration among the elderly.
The ageing bursary scheme is the first of its kind.
The scheme will benefit about 3,000 senior citizens from lower-income households in the district over the next 3 years.
Each recipient will receive $200 worth of vouchers per year that can be redeemed when enrolling in elderly-friendly courses and programmes in the community.
This includes courses like IT literacy workshops, karaoke sessions and health qigong classes.
They will also have to volunteer in at least three community events within a year of being awarded the bursary.
This could include manning stalls at community carnivals, packing goodie bags and even befriending other senior citizens.
Speaking at the launch of the bursaries, Mayor of South West District, Dr Amy Khor, says this will encourage recipients to play a more active role by helping out in whatever capacity they can.
"The idea really is to show them, impress upon them that even whilst they may be elderly, it is still possible for them to make a difference, make a positive contribution to the community. And really, this is what we are promoting, active ageing."
And senior citizens like Rizal Abdullah are looking forward to applying for the bursary.
The 66 year old cleaner hopes to take up a morning exercise class and an IT literacy course.
"At least I can memorise something you see. Because when you grow older you're bound to slack down. So hopefully then I will be able to bring up myself again."
The bursaries are open to senior citizens aged 60 and above who are also blue CHAS card holders.
The first batch of vouchers for the bursary recipients will be disbursed in May.
-By Lianne Chia
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