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Page added on November 21, 2016

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Home for Filipino Seniors

By: Tigs Tidalgo

When the Filipino Seniors Structure of Calgary was still in the cradle of infancy, the Filipino home for seniors was already thought about. It was part of the whole plan, but only on dotted lines for wishful thinking. We attempted to realize it after the third association, but necessary numbers were not yet possible. We decided to put it back as wishful thinking. .

It was said before that the seniors structure would not be possible without the helping hand of friendly politicians in government. This is basically correct and to materialize our wishful thinking about seniors home for Filipinos will seemingly be on the same nature.

Our seniors now are capable to go forward into major endeavours over and beyond the needed social and recreational challenges. I believe that the structure is already matured enough to such undertaking. Besides, they need it.

Our cultural attitude about putting our seniors in homes for the aged has changed. It is no longer deemed as a way of discarding responsibilities. It used to be unacceptable practice with unkind criticism from kababayans. We are realizing it now that the system is not really that bad. We learned from experience that it neither lessen obligation nor diminish affection towards elderly parents. Practicality also dictates to favour both sides of the equation.

We crossed the ocean with fixed imbedded mentality on what we innately believed was proper. But this concept becomes a variable for adjustment towards the normal dictum of the place we are in today. We are here for good and Canada is our country too. It is our home and we also have to align ourselves to modes and manners of the place and time.

Seniors abuse in some Filipino families can not be completely overcome regardless of efforts and resources of senior associations. Yes, it minimizes hurts and harm, but elimination of this dreadful disease seems elusively impossible. It is still an ugly part of our community and constructing the home for our elderly citizens is an ideal solution.

A once elected MLA and a cabinet minister who approved the construction of the Vietnamese and the Punjab seniors homes in Calgary said that the Filipino community must have one ‘table’ to talk with government. This was indeed coincidental because we have this in mind for a long time. We still don’t have this kind of  ‘table’ yet. What we have is still something sort of a bench.

This has been a delemna and is now beginning to take shape. With patience, undertanding and hard work, the new elected leadership of our community will become  effected, accepted and respected. Through their inginuety, this vital need in our community could possibly be realized.

Yes, we now are working to have one credible entity to represent our community. It is still flimsy, but with good potential. It will be with substance and merits with excellent future. We just have to continually nourish this thought with care and effort  to satisfy its purpose fully someday. This is not easy, but we have to do our best by putting our collective will into it. Our elderly citizens are depending on it.


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