President Irfaan Ali on Friday brightened the Christmas spirit of residents of the Dharm Shala after pledging his Government’s commitment to improving their lives and the lives of persons in similar establishments.
“I am very happy to be among you in celebrating, not only Christmas, but celebrating this moment in which we give back to our elderly. I want to assure you that in the coming years we will be working on specific programmes, specific initiatives to ensure that facilities like these are not only supported but that the residents are also supported in key and important areas of life like healthcare.”
The President told the visibly happy resident of the charitable institution that his overall aim is to help make their lives less stressful with better overall care.
He said that as a society, we are specifically mandated by the various religious texts and scriptures to pay special attention to the elderly and children, and not only to be respectful and kind, but also helpful.
He also praised the Private Sector for their commitment to corporate social responsibility.
“I am so pleased with the role the Private Sector has been playing in our country. In all the activities I have attended, not only this season but since I assumed office, the private sector has been present on the programme in a big way. This tells us that we have a private sector now that is keen on corporate social responsibility.
The Head of State also lauded the management of the facility for their continuous commitment at the institution, which will celebrate its 100th year of existence in 2021.
“I remember as a child growing up, always seeing this activity in the newspapers. It became a part of the Christmas tradition of Guyana. But that is just what the public sees once a year. But you do this every day.”
The Head of State implored all of Guyana to become involved in similar activities.
“I say to you, all of you respected elders, I am so grateful to be here. It is my honour and I wish you continued good health. I wish you painless days. I wish you an environment in which you can enjoy the blessings of older age.”
He reminded them that: “you have a Government that cares for you. You have people in society that cares for you and will always be looking out for you”.
The President also made a sizeable donation to the institution.
CEO of Gaico Construction and General Services Komal Singh also made a donation.
After addressing the residents, President Ali served lunch and mingled with them. [Office of the President]