Rand Aid marked a joyous occasion by celebrating the birthdays of 11 residents ranging from 95 to 100 years old. Hailing from various Rand Aid facilities, these residents, all living independently, were the honoured guests at Inyoni Creek’s monthly birthday celebration on November 2. The event aimed to acknowledge and celebrate the “determined spirits” of these remarkable individuals.
During the celebration, Zabeth Zühlsdorff, the general manager of services and advance division at Rand Aid Association, addressed the gathering. She highlighted the inevitability of age-related health challenges as candles accumulate on birthday cakes. However, Zühlsdorff emphasised that this should not hinder individuals from fully embracing life. She encouraged them to pursue activities they had dreamed of when their time was not consumed by work, within the bounds of their health.
Ayanda Matthews, the general manager of the compliance and social division at Rand Aid, echoed the commitment to promoting active and healthy ageing. She underscored the offerings of a lock-up-and-go lifestyle, curated services, social events, outings, and various activities within Rand Aid’s villages and care centres.
The celebration introduced some of the remarkable residents, such as Isobel Kohll, turning 101, who attributed her well-being to diverse interests like painting and art. Another resident, Joyce Lockhart, aged 100, emphasised values of tolerance, kindness, and consideration for her longevity. Billie Sack, 99, engaged in daily walks, crossword puzzles, and diamond dot crafting, contributing to her active mind and well-being.
Other notable residents included Hylda Molly Skutelsky, 99, who, despite being wheelchair-bound, continued to find fulfilment in the bridge, music, esoterica, yoga, reading, meditation, and counselling. Hugh Cunningham, 97, shared his daily activities, which included walks, reading, and playing bridge and Scrabble, attributing his well-being to positivity and staying active.
The diverse stories of these golden “oldies” showcased a range of interests, activities, and perspectives on ageing. The residents expressed gratitude for their families and diverse hobbies and shared insights into what they attribute to their longevity. The event was lauded by participants, with one resident expressing immense enjoyment of the birthday tea and commending the organisers for surpassing expectations. The celebration not only marked a milestone for these extraordinary individuals but also exemplified the spirit of resilience, community, and vitality within the Rand Aid community.
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Photo: Supplied by Citizen