Posted by: jkirkby8712 | March 18, 2012

Thursday, 15th Mach 2012 – concerns of senior citizens

This morning was my final session at the gymnasium  in my first 8 week’s segment of my ‘Lift For Life’ program. Made an appointment to come in next week for a new assessment, and to make a start on the next phase of the program.  More money would change hands as well of course. Nothing is for free these days!!!

Another interesting set of figures put out through the National Seniors organisation this week – money worries are the top concern when it comes to growing older, according to a new survey released this week. National Seniors Australia surveyed 1,800 members and found their biggest concern about getting older was the value of their savings and investments not keeping up with inflation. This was followed by being unable to receive proper care when they are no longer able to look after themselves and thirdly by not being able to maintain a reasonable standard of living for their rest of their lives. National Seniors Australia chief executive Michael O’Neill said the findings were important for the government to acknowledge as it considers the Productivity Commission’s (PC) final report, Caring for Older Australians. “We want to make sure that those who cannot afford aged care are properly looked after because we don’t believe money should be the criterion for receiving quality care,’’ O’Neill said.  The respondents’ top three priorities for aged care reform were to address workforce shortages in aged care (24%), improve the quality of life for aged care residents (21%) and increase the number of residential care places (17%).

I’d like to see a survey of the make-up of the kind of National Seniors people who are both members of the organisation, and take part in these surveys. When I look at some of the things promoted –  expensive touring holidays, special wine offers, and so on, that seems to me to be catering for a specific financial level, and not particularly your average senior citizen. While I guess that is simplifying things a little, the concern about ‘savings and investments’ also points in that direction, and even the annual cost of membership – not necessarily high, but for many people, the direct personal benefits that they could derive from such an annual fee, seem fairly limited in my view and hardly worth the extra expense. Not quite so for myself – I ‘m not particularly  interested in those kind of  ‘special’ offers, but I do find many of the articles in the monthly magazine, and the regular email supplements, to be quite interesting, and usually of relevance. My point being that the kind of survey referred to – yes, possibly indicative of the views of ‘members’ but not necessarily of the majority of senior citizens in general who feel there is no value in paying another annual fee for another organisation that they can’t see themselves gaining much from.  Mind you, I’m sure that the top three priorities for aged care reform, as listed in the last sentence of the above paragraph are real enough indeed.  In respect to the first item, for eg, I read somewhere else today, that a survey of Human Resource managers [or in my day, Personnel Officers] revealed that there is a large scale ‘practice’ in many organisations to resist the employment of older workers, and I would imagine that would become even more prevalent, once the worker in question gets beyond the official age of retirement.

In speaking of senior citizens, a much respected member of my ‘extended’ family – namely the mother of my former wife – celebrated her 91st birthday today, and I was lucky enough to be invited to join the small family group to dinner at the local bowling club restaurant. Only member of her ‘Sunbury’ family missing, was my second son Adam – he had a cricket selection meeting tonight. While his ‘D’ Grade team missed out on the final four for this weekend’ semi-final games, two of the teams in the Club would be competing. I think Adam said that he was the Selection chairman, so he had a reasonable excuse for his absence from the dinner party. Not that I was really the life of the ‘party’ tonight myself – had been feeling slightly off color throughout the day, and when it came to eating a meal this evening, I simply couldn’t manage very much of my food! Rather a waste, which left me feeling a little guilty, but sometimes you just know when you have to stop!  However, ‘Nan’ or Win [the lady of the moment] appear to enjoy the night out at her favourite spot, and that had been the whole point of the night. The occasion included Shirley, James, Susan, Jodie & her boyfriend, Ash [plus yours truly of course].

Meanwhile, Adam’s horse had another run this afternoon at the Melton Harness racing – he did mention it to me last night in a text message, but alas, I forgot all about it  – discovered later, via one of his Face Book entries that ‘Dimensions’ had come in third today – getting closer to that elusive win!!  In the meantime, my attention was a little distracted this afternoon by the arrival of the ‘tree contractor’ who had decided that today was his opportunity to get rid of the large tree in my back garden, that I’d only recently discovered was dying, and threatening to partially collapse into the neighbour’s property!  For the cost of $400, it all seem to be over very quickly, but I figured there was no way I would ever be able to get rid of the thing, let alone cut it down, and I suppose the aspects of personal danger and safety are built into the cost of a job of that nature. Anyway, by mid-afternoon, the tree had disappeared, as had all remains of it, which satisfied me!!

Up until later this evening, I was under the worrying impression that I had a dentist appointment first thing in the morning. I was actually thinking that it was rather surprising that the surgery had not rung me to confirm the appointment, as is normal practice. I checked my diary – the appointment was for Friday of next week!! Well, at least I found myself feeling a little more relaxed for the remainder of the evening!!!

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