JN Group donates to NCSC to assist elderly in COVID-19
Earl Samuels (left), assistant general manager, The Jamaica National Group makes a donation of a $1 million to Cassandra Morrison, executive director of the National Council for Senior Citizens (NCSC).
The work of the National Council for Senior Citizens (NCSC), the umbrella organisation which provides support to senior citizens, was enhanced by a contribution of $1 million, courtesy of The Jamaica National Group.
The donation was made through the company’s recently announced Welfare Fund, to support Jamaicans in their response to the effects of COVID-19.
Cassandra Morrison, executive director of the NCSC, who was a guest on the JN Circle Catch Up virtual series on May 14, said that the funds will be used to provide care packages to its members.
“We will be able to provide approximately 300 hundred persons with food and hygiene packages. Therefore, this donation will go a long way to make life a little easier for some of our senior citizens,” she related.
Claudine Allen, member ombudsman of The Jamaica National Group; and team lead for the JN Circle, said that The Jamaica National Group was happy to make a donation to the Council.
“Our senior citizens are one of the most vulnerable groups being directly affected by COVID-19. Hence, the Group decided that it was fitting to make this donation to the organisation, to assist its members,” Miss Allen informed.
Morrison stated that NCSC members, who are 65 years and older, are challenged, based on being confined at home; and the pandemic has become a new normal for them.
She noted that for the most part, persons have been complying with the stay at home order; however, not all seniors understand the gravity of the virus.
“Some seniors are yet to fully comprehend why some of the restrictions are necessary; and why they themselves are at risk. Many seniors, particularly those in rural areas, are very independent. The threat and risk of COVID-19 is not something you can see, because it is not so tangible; and fortunately; we are not seeing images of persons collapsing in the streets, such as what happens overseas. Consequently, it is yet to come home for some seniors,” she informed.
The executive director stated that the NCSC continues to work with the Ministry of Health & Wellness, to craft messages so that seniors can understand; and they work with the volunteers, on the ground, to pass on relevant messages.
She also pointed out that the National Health Fund (NHF) has been in communities providing support in filling prescriptions for seniors; and local corporate entities, such as supermarkets, have been delivering food items. In addition, they also work with volunteers, who make telephone calls to seniors, to check up on them.
“One of the main things that we would like Jamaicans to do, is to protect the elderly; and urge them to comply with the rules laid out by the Ministry of Health & Wellness, to stay at home. We don’t want to look back post COVID-19 and discover that we lost a generation of elderly citizens, because we were careless,” she affirmed.