Special Correspondent

Bangalore: Governor T.N. Chaturvedi on Tuesday presented the Excellence In Ageing Services Award, instituted by the International Association of Homes and Services for the Ageing, to Nightingale's Medical Trust.

The Elders Helpline (phone 1090) is a joint effort of the trust and the city police that had helped several senior citizens with family-related and legal issues and with healthcare.

According to Managing Trustee Radha S. Murthy, many aged persons today lead insecure lives, lacking a support system. "Studies reveal that generally elders in our country do not want to be separated from their families. What they need are effective and reliable social support systems that keep family ties intact. This is what we are trying to do," she said.

There were better solutions than old age homes, where the care given was almost impersonal and only adds to the feelings faced by elders such as loneliness, depression, low self esteem, being abuses, personal and economic insecurity and lack of good healthcare. What Nightingales has done is to create a Day Care Centre where nearly 350 aged men and women get together enjoy planned activities.

Protecting the legal rights of senior citizens is an important activity of the Trust, Dr. Murthy said.