The Alzheimer’s Disease Foundation (ADF) has called on state governments, relevant authorities and philanthropists to invest in the upkeep and care of the elderly people in the society.
Mrs Josephine Anenih, the Convener of the group, made the call on Monday in Awka at a programme to mark the Year 2021 World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD).
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the United Nations (UN) recognises every June 15 as WEAAD when the entire world voices its opposition to any form of abuse of the older generation.
The theme for this year’s commemoration is ‘Elder Abuse Prevention — Lets’ Talk ‘.
Anenih said that there was the need for a policy dialogue and implementation on health, social well-being and protection for the elderly in the country.
According to her, having such policy dialogue and the implementation will help the elderly live better lives.
“The elderly are vulnerable people who need care, love, respect, assistance and protection to go about their daily activities.
“There is the need for government, organisations and well-meaning individuals to invest in the care and upkeep of the elderly people.
“Let us keep a check on the elderly people living around us. Let us be their source of strength and make them more aware of their human rights.
“We need to provide them with love and care that will stop them from feeling isolated, neglected and depressed, as well as provide a sense of community, a social life, that empowers and energises them, “she said.
Anenih said that Alzheimer’s disease is one of the major health challenges affecting the elderly.
She described Alzheimer’s disease as an irreversible, progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys memory, thinking skills and decline in cognitive ability.
“Alzheimer’s disease has no cure but it has treatment for symptoms which affects five to eight per cent of all people above 60 years of age.
“When it comes to elderly care, government alone can not do it. It requires a collective effort by all.
“So, the elders in our society should not be neglected or abused in anyway. We are there today because they were there for us in our yesterdays,”she said.
ADF is a non-governmental organisation set up in 2016 to create awareness about the prevalence, prevention and possible cure of Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia in Nigerian communities.(NAN)