DA recognizes ‘elderly sector’ as partner in development

Author: DA Communications Group | 5 October 2021

Agriculture Undersecretary for Special Concerns and Chairperson of the DA’s Committee for the Elderly and Differently-Abled Persons, Waldo R. Carpio, led the opening ceremony of the Elderly Filipino Week on October 5, 2021.

Joining him were Undersecretary Rodolfo V. Vicerra, Undersecretary Evelyn G. Laviña, and Assistant Secretary Jane C. Bacayo.

The Elderly Filipino Week also known as “Linggo ng Katandaang Filipino” is an annual event, celebrated every first week of October, to promote the health and wellness of the elderly sector.

This year’s theme, “Palakasin, Paunlarin, Pahalagahan ang Katandaang Pilipino (AKAP),” aims to highlight the contribution of senior citizens in nation-building and agricultural development, as well as raise awareness on the issues concerning the sector.

In a video message, Agriculture Secretary William Dar stressed that the elderly sector plays an integral role in national development, particularly in the area of poverty reduction, food security, and social welfare.

“The role of older people in our national life has changed dramatically in recent decades. In 2000, there were 4.6 million senior citizens, 60 years or older throughout the country, representing about 6 percent of the total population. In two decades, this number has grown to 9.4 million older people or about 8.6 percent of the total population,” Sec. Dar said.

He said this year’s celebration calls for more responsive initiatives to promote the welfare of the aged in all sectors.

“Let us work together to make their lives more secure, to house them, and to ensure full employment for those elderly people who are still able to work,” he said.

“After all, elderly Filipinos are not only an important link to our shared patrimony, they are also our best role models for excellence, integrity, leadership, and accountability,” he added.

Meanwhile, Usec. Carpio expressed his gratefulness towards elderly employees of the Department for their dedication in serving the country amidst the threat of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Hindi naging madali ang pandemic sa ating lahat. Hindi natin maikakaila na isa itong malaking dagok sa ating nakasanayan. Subalit kahit gayunpaman ang ating mga nararanasan, patuloy pa rin sa paninilbihan ang ating mga lolo’t lola sa ating Kagawaran para patuloy na mailapit sa ating mga minamahal na magsasaka sa kanilang inaasam na isang masaganang ani at mataas na kita,” Carpio said.

Usec. Vicerra, in his message, stressed that the elderlies continue to be ‘partners of the government for development’. He said that despite their age, the older Filipinos are still productive.

“We need and value their experiences and ideas,” he added. ### (Kristel Merle, DA-AFID)

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