Today is the International Day of Older Persons. It also marks the beginning of Older Persons’ Month, a time when we celebrate the contributions of our seniors and reaffirm our commitment to them.
The month’s theme, Healthy, Happy Seniors: Create a Society for all Ages, is a signal to us that we need to constantly strive towards creating a society in which all our citizens can prosper and realise their full potential.
A productive, healthy and happy existence is not only the right of the young; our senior citizens have similar dreams and aspirations for fulfilling their golden years.
And as a society, we owe much to our seniors, for they are the ones who poured their hearts and energies into building a national framework. They nurtured families and laid foundations for democratic institutions, for modern education and health systems, and for our tourism and financial sectors.
For a long time, too, their strong Christian principles provided a moral compass for our society and they continue to stand tall on their faith.
Let us therefore thank them in a meaningful way. Let us honour them and let us show gratitude to the older persons in our families and communities, not just this month, but every day.
This means looking after their welfare at all times; encouraging their participation in physical and social activities; cherishing them as integral family members and protecting their property and legal rights.
Let us also encourage them to take active parts in the lives of their grandchildren and other young people.
Let us look to our seniors for wisdom and let us absorb their values regarding faith, appreciation and love for others.
They have paved the way for us; let us show our appreciation and continue to build on their legacy. By so doing, we can surely begin to heal the rifts in our society.
God bless our seniors, and may God bless the Cayman Islands.
Minister of Community Affairs and Housing