|Our home for the elderly is situated in a densely populated area of Zimbabwe. Presently, there are 28 residents, eighteen male and ten female, who come from different countries such as Mozambique, Botswana, South Africa and Zimbabwe. Most of the residents would primarily have arrived in this area in search of work, possibly married and eventually settled in this location.
Sr. Louise (right) with residents
As elderly people, they are often physically frail yet enriched with a strong sense of community and intent on looking out for each other, especially the immobile, by carrying out tasks such as laundering clothes and serving meals to those unable to come to the dining area.
The people of Scotland have been extremely generous in providing funds for a much-needed refurbishment of the home. Broken windows were replaced, plumbing repaired and the rooms repainted. These renovations have the residence looking very smart and the elderly people, greatly satisfied and content. As a nurse, I also ensure that medical needs are taken care of, especially aches and pains, all part of the ageing process! One room has been converted into a dispensary. It is here that holistic care is offered to many in need of attention, time, and love to ensure their dignity and make them feel special.
Some financial needs of the Home are met by our generous benefactors. Our biggest demand is for money to pay staff wages.This means living literally from month-to-month. Zimbabwe has suffered greatly over the years, with the result that many are poor, destitute and financially bereft. Church Organisations offer assistance, local shops offer some food and through this we are able to feed the residents with a simple diet.Though not varied in variety, we do ensure they do not go hungry, as unfortunately many local villagers do. Our garden provides a supply of fresh vegetables.
I find it a joy to assist in the care of these elderly people. With a Carmelite Sister and four staff members, the care becomes a unique privilege for us.To all our benefactors and those who make this possible, I express my appreciation and deepest